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Rays pitching prospect Jose De Leon headed for Tommy John surgery

By Marc Topkin | Times Staff
Published: March 7, 2018 Updated: March 7, 2018 at 04:28 PM
RHP Jose De Leon is the second top young Rays pitcher to be hurt this spring. [Times files 2017]

UPDATE, 4:28: The Rays have now confirmed that De Leon was diagosed with a torn UCL and is headed to see Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion. He previously saw Rays team orthopedist Dr. Koco Eaton. That is the same route Honeywell took to get his Tommy John surgery.

DEVELOPING: RHP Jose De Leon has a torn UCL and is likely headed for Tommy John elbow surgery, the Tampa Bay Times has learned.

De Leon, 25, is the second promising starting prospect to be hurt this spring, following RHP Brent Honeywell, who underwent Tommy John surgery last week.

De Leon was acquired from the Dodgers in January 2017 in exchange for 2B Logan Forsythe and came with considerable hype that he did not live up to in a lost 2017 season.

De Leon made only one appearance for the Rays, spending the rest of last season in the minors and on the disabled list,  missing time due to three different injuries, two having to do with his arm.

Rays coaches had spoken highly of De Leon this spring, praising him for coming into camp in better shape and for his more aggressive pitching.

He last pitched on March 3.