Dillon Overton, A's 2nd-round pick who signed tonight, will have Tommy John surgery within next 2 weeks. Bonus was significantly under slot.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 27, 2013
Shortly after it was announced that former Oklahoma starting pitcher Dillon Overton had reached an agreement with the Oakland Athletics, the above report from Jeff Passan came out that Overton will require Tommy John surgery.
The former OU lefty was selected by Oakland in the second round of this year's MLB Draft and apparently the A's were aware of the potential issue when they made the pick.
"We know that he has had some issues but we are confident as to where he's at medically," A's director of scouting Eric Kubota said in a conference call with reporters after the selection.
"We feel like his athleticism helps to compensate for (his slight build)," Kubota added. "We really don't have a huge issue with it. I mean, thats the body he's been given and he's pitched with it and we feel like that will not be an issue as he moves forward. He's a very athletic kid and he's just more wiry than thick." - CSNBAYAREA.com
If you'll remember, Overton missed two starts in the latter half of Oklahoma's season for what was described at the time as a "forearm strain." He came back quicker than was initially expected and went on to pitch for the Sooners in both their regional and super regional series. With this latest development the question has to be asked, should he have even been out there at all?
Could this news have played a role in Overton publicly ripping his former head coach? Who knows. The injury appears to have cost Overton some money given that reports are he agreed to terms on a bonus much less than what he was slotted for according to where he was drafted.
The reasons are probably irrelevant at this point considering Overton is now a pro and Sunny Golloway has moved on to Auburn.
Not the ideal way to start your professional career, but Tommy John surgery has become almost a write of passage for major league pitchers. And with the medical advancements, many guys come back with the ability to throw even harder than they did prior to the procedure. However, with any surgery there is obviously no guarantee you are able to make it back at all. So hopefully for Overton's sake he is one of the fortunate ones and will be able to achieve his dream of pitching in the majors.