Blue Jays prospect Max Pentecost has 2nd shoulder surgery
Drafted in the first round of the 2014 MLB Draft, Toronto Blue Jays catching prospect had a memorable fairly memorable debut season in professional baseball. Unfortunately, he’s now got a pair of shoulder surgeries to show for it.
According to Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet, Pentecost underwent a second shoulder scope procedure recently, once again performed by Dr. James Andrews to clean-up the shoulder joint. His previous surgery was to repair a partially torn labrum.
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According to Nicholson-Smith, the setback will cost Pentecost the beginning of his 2015 season. Given the nature of the surgery and the fact that it involves his throwing shoulder, the catcher will be unable to resume throwing for a minimum of three months.
This is a tremendous blow to a minor league catching depth chart that has seen its share of hits in recent seasons. After trading Travis d’Arnaud to the New York Mets prior to 2013, the Blue Jays have watched J.P. Arencibia devolve and then get non-tendered. Meanwhile, the heir-apparent A.J. Jimenez has struggled to stay healthy, recovering slowly from Tommy John surgery in 2012.
Needless to say, the Blue Jays were counting heavily on a quick ascension for Max Pentecost, who the team drafted with the 11th pick of the 2014 draft (two picks after Jeff Hoffman). Pentecost rewarded that high-draft slot with a .324/.330/.419 slash-line across 25-games between the Gulf League Blue Jays and Short-A Vancouver.
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That was enough to slot Pentecost as the team’s #5 prospect in our 2015 Top 20 Blue Jays Prospects this winter. Pentecost also ranked #6 on MLB.com, #6 per Baseball America, #5 as per Baseball Prospectus, and #4 per Minor League Ball. Needless to say, pundits were expecting a lot from the Kennesaw State product in 2015.
The surgery will delay the start of his 2015 season and will likely cost Pentecost a full year of development. That said, the presence of Russell Martin for the next half a decade doesn’t put any pressure on Pentecost to rise too quickly. The plan to have him start the season in Lansing and perhaps make his way to Dunedin before season’s end may be a bit delayed, but the future is still there.
However, the red flags are officially up and pessimistic fans are likely rocking in the corner chanting, “here we go again”.