My Work BFF™ and I went to lunch today. We specifically timed it, so we’d see the first few innings of the Twins game. Franciso Liriano, the most awesome rookie pitchers of the league, was going to be starting. While he was going to be on a limited pitch count to begin with, we were overly excited to see the F-Bomb do some damage back on the mound, regardless of how few pitches he might throw.
Everyone else in Bloomington had the same idea, because we had to wait 20 minutes for a table. By the time we were finally seated, it was the top of the 3rd inning. No sooner than we had ordered our drinks did the entire sports bar grow quite a bit quieter.
We watched Liriano as he throw a horrible pitch Bobby Kielty that Twins catcher Mike Redmond had to dig out of the dirt. Liriano doesn’t through bad pitches like that. And he especially doesn’t walk off the mound after a pitch and follow it by bending down with his hands on his knees. We knew it wasn’t pretty; we just hoped it wasn’t as bad as it is.
There’s no doubt that every Twins fan out there wants to see this kid back in the lineup as soon as possible. Even he wants to be back in the lineup as soon as possible.
The rumor around the sports sites everywhere is that the next step is Tommy John surgery. Tommy John surgery is where they replace the ligament in your elbow with one from another place on your body. Then, you rehabilitate. For an entire year.
Liriano is one of my favorite Twins players, so to see him in the kind of pain that won’t even let him throw more than 30 pitches, it’s sad. I hope the off-season is all it takes to get this phenom back in the lineup. With Liriano and Santana forming one of the most tenacious 1-2 pitching combinations in the league, there’s no telling what could happen.