Joel Zumaya suffers traumatic injury – Olecranon Fracture

On Joel Zumaya’s 14th pitch of the night, he threw a 99mph fastball that Delmon Young fouled off. Zumaya however ended up in a crumpled heap behind the mound. His arm was twitching and his face was a mix of excruciating pain and terror. We’ve seen Zumaya improbably bounce back from a variety of injuries, but with each successive one you can’t help but fear that he’s thrown his last pitch.

A preliminary diagnosis will likely be available shortly, as will a roster move. I’ll update things here as we know more. Ryan Perry has only made one rehab appearance for Toledo. Robbie Weinhardt made his 3rd rehab appearance in Connecticut tonight. Daniel Schlereth has been erratic with 14 K’s and 8 BB’s in his last 10 innings. Casey Fien and Jay Sborz may also be in the mix.

UPDATE: Well, not really an update. Zumaya will get an MRI in the morning and Jim Leyland isn’t speculating on the injury.

UPDATE 2: Zumaya has officially been placed on the DL with a vaguely defined elbow injury (MRI results still pending I suppose). Casey Fien gets the call and will be added to the 40 man roster.

UPDATE Ourch: It is a fractured olecranon. Bend your arm and feel the bony part of your elbow, aka the funny bone. That’s the olecranon. The fracture is nondisplaced and the internet says that a nondisplaced fracture isn’t necessarily treated with surgery. Usually it is fractured due to a blow though and not soft tissue ripping it off.


  1. Linda

    June 28, 2010 at 11:37 pm

    Zumaya is trending on Twitter for all the wrong reasons! Crap!

    • movietoptime

      June 29, 2010 at 7:04 am

      That’s really wrong what he did

  2. catswithbats

    June 28, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    Laird just said on post-game he (Zoom?) heard a “pop”. I said, “Oh, crap.”

  3. Jamie Favreau

    June 28, 2010 at 11:57 pm

    That does not sound good at all!
    Thoughts and prayers for him… Sounds like an awful injury!

  4. cib

    June 29, 2010 at 7:23 am

    This obsession with the radar gun has got to stop or this will happen to more and more young pitchers. I’ve been at games where the pitch was a ball, but the board showed a 99 or 100 or more, and people CHEER. That is nuts. It’s not baseball.

    • dre in chi

      June 29, 2010 at 8:53 am


      i don’t think what’s happened in baseball is any different that what’s happening across sports in general. sports are getting, to quote the sage Kanye We…errr Daft Punk, “harder, faster, stronger.” and so, since this is ‘Merica and we like this type of thing, we cheer.

      lets not also forget that the obsession with the radar gun wouldn’t happen if pitch-speed weren’t also correlated with success.

  5. scotsw

    June 29, 2010 at 8:32 am

    While it’s too early to write anyone’s professional epitaph, Zumaya’s injury did not look good at all. But his violent delivery sort of made this inevitable. There seems to be almost no way for him to get through a season without injury. Remember the tendon in his middle finger he tore warming up in the bullpen?

    Jim “art of pitching” Price talks all the time about changing speeds and locations. He does have a point Joel didn’t do that enough… 102 looks a lot faster after you’ve been looking at a diet of 95 mph fastballs and 85 mph breaking balls. The question I’ve always had is, why do the Tigers allow him to pitch like that? Given his history, don’t you tell him to back off enough, and pick and choose when to throw the cheese?

    Last thought: Zumaya’s control has been off lately, as Leyland has noted. I wonder if he’s been feeling a twinge and trying to pitch through it? I admire the tough-it-out mentality, but that pain is usually a sign that something is wrong. These young guys need to be taught to listen to their bodies, as well.

  6. Jonathon

    June 29, 2010 at 11:06 am

    Casey Fien called up according to Jason Beck

    • TigerFaninTexas

      June 29, 2010 at 12:36 pm

      As I await the approach of soon to be hurricane Alex…it appears, we are only under a tropical storm warning…I just hope the power stays on, so I don’t miss the Twins game on any event, I digress…What does anyone know about Fein? His low strikeout numbers in AAA, scare me a bit…I wanted to see Schlereth..I know he would be another lefty, but, until Perry comes back..I think we need a swing and miss guy for the 8th inning…last I checked, he was pitching well in Toledo…any thoughts…I have no clue about this Fein guy, he may be tough…I just don’t know.

  7. Jerry The Tiger Fan

    June 29, 2010 at 11:10 am

    Doesn’t this site have game threads any longer? There was no game thread for the Sunday win over ATL and no game thread for last night’s win over Minnesota.

    • Andrew in Toronto

      June 29, 2010 at 1:02 pm

      I think Billfer is just tired of all the commenters moaning and complaining about how terrible this team is, and then mocking him when he suggests that maybe they aren’t so bad is some respects. But, I could be wrong. Maybe he’s just busy.

      • Kevin in Dallas

        June 29, 2010 at 1:38 pm

        He’s just busy. He provides a tremendous service for us at no cost to us. If we have to use a different thread to discuss a game, I can handle it. I love the insight I get from billfer and the other posters on here.

        • Linda

          June 29, 2010 at 1:54 pm

          I’m sure he’s busy, and I wouldn’t blame him for spending his free time in more appreciated pursuits after the way certain people crapped all over his place during Game 73. The mocking went way beyond friendly banter and I was ashamed for people I don’t even know. I wouldn’t expect those people to apologize since they apparently don’t have any common decency, but I wouldn’t blame Billfer if he never posted another game thread. We all lose.

  8. Mark@HOU

    June 29, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    Thats actually good news for Zumaya. My wife, Zumaya’s her Tiger, is an anesthesia resident.

    She said that if it’s not displaced, it might take a screw to heal but isn’t a big deal. If it is displaced, then he probably tore the ligament that attaches to it.

    It’g going to be key if the ligament tore thus breaking the bone.

    She has performed, as an anesthesiologist, mostly on elderly patients. Done for the season, but if this is it there’s a decent chance next year. I just had to ask and thought I would share. I’m sure Dr. James Andrews with the Xrays will perform some magic.

  9. jason

    June 29, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    So, I glanced over the Elbow Fractures webpage that billfer linked. I am trying to figure out how this happened.

    Did it happen when his arm fully extended, or due to high torque on his arm when it was bent? My virtually non-existant medical knowledge, or knowledge of the human body thinks it was when he fully extended.

    I’ve landed on my elbows pretty hard in my lifetime, and I’ve never broken a olecranon. That must be some crazy force to do so throwing a ball.

  10. West Coast Tiger

    June 29, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    The Olecranon Fractures can occur as stress fractures. My neighbor who is an orthopedic surgeon says it is a common injury for young pitchers 15 yrs old.

  11. Charlie

    June 29, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    Not sure this applies since it’s for adolescents (who I assume heal faster), but this article suggests pitchers can return after about 30 weeks:

    Note: I have no idea if I picked the right injury or if this applies in any way, if not, my apologies. I am not a doctor.

  12. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    June 29, 2010 at 7:38 pm

    Sorry to see such a terrible and sad event during last night’s game. Zumuya gave us it all this season and if there is a silver lining in any of this, it’s that he left the team the day the Tigers reclaimed first place.I strongly suggest sending Zumuya a card to thank him for his dedication and to keep his morale up. I hope (and want) to see him back on the mound.

  13. Kevin in Dallas

    June 29, 2010 at 8:02 pm

    Zumaya with a fractured elbow, 4 mos.

    Tonight’s lineup:

    I like it.

    • Keith (Mr. X)

      June 29, 2010 at 8:10 pm

      Me too.

  14. jason

    June 29, 2010 at 8:22 pm

    Instead of asking which Twins are Tiger-killers, I would like to know which Twins are our favorite Twins to face. Which Twins have the worst stats vs. the Tigers and we don’t mind seeing come up to the plate?

    • Mark in Chicago

      June 29, 2010 at 8:32 pm

      none of them. they all kill us all the time.

  15. Tigers Fan in Toronto

    June 29, 2010 at 8:47 pm

    It seems that game by game it is either feast or famine for the Tiger offense.
    That must be very frustrating for all…….not knowing what offense is going to show up that game.

  16. Randolph

    June 29, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    I have to say, I respect Zumaya even more after his pre-game interview on the radio with Dan Dickerson. He apologized to Tigers fans for the injury and wanted to really help the team succeed this year. He seemed really sincere and classy, I hope he recovers and can continue his career.

    • Kevin in Dallas

      June 29, 2010 at 9:01 pm

      Agreed. That was moving and insightful. He really cares about this organization.

      • kathy

        June 29, 2010 at 9:12 pm

        What did he say? I missed it.

        • Kevin in Dallas

          June 29, 2010 at 9:19 pm

          As Dickerson was asking a question about his elbow, Zumaya cut him off to apologize to the Tigers fans. He said he’s been trying his best and really wants the team to win. Dickerson said an apology was not necessary, but Zumaya kept going. Good stuff.

          • kathy

            June 29, 2010 at 9:28 pm

            Sorry I missed that.

    • Tigers Fan in Toronto

      June 29, 2010 at 9:25 pm

      The Tigers are a team of class individuals…..from top to bottom!

  17. Tigers Fan in Toronto

    June 29, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    We are getting screwed by the blind umps again tonight…….foe example …..the 3-2 pitch to Punto that was a strike and would have ended the inning……but was called a ball resulting in a two out walk…… guy up hits a triple scoring a run!

    • Kevin in Dallas

      June 29, 2010 at 9:44 pm

      We’ll get to 5 or 6…just need to hold down MN.

  18. Mark in Chicago

    June 29, 2010 at 9:45 pm

    Every Twins game feels like this – we get a couple runs early, maybe take a lead, but we can’t knock their starter out and he ends up pitching deeper into the game than he should and we can’t score any more runs. Meanwhile, the Twins keep adding on and suddenly they’re up by 2 or 3 and it’s the 8th inning.

    It’s exhausting.

  19. TPB in Troy

    June 29, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    It’s probably time to start throwing some strikes.

  20. Mark in Chicago

    June 29, 2010 at 10:07 pm

    We can’t get Denard Span out. Again. He hits like a million against us. Say what you want about Cy _____ pitching against us every night, Denard Span is Ty Cobb’s younger, MUCH BETTER brother.

  21. Ian

    June 29, 2010 at 10:09 pm

    Good. Lord.

    This game is gonna get shut off pretty soon…

  22. kathy

    June 29, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    Pitching just falling apart so far.

  23. Kevin in Dallas

    June 29, 2010 at 10:23 pm

    Just a bad game friends. Let’s not forget who’s in first.

    • Mark in Chicago

      June 29, 2010 at 10:37 pm

      at least we didn’t get swept, that’s all that really counts as far as I’m concerned.

      • T Smith

        June 29, 2010 at 11:55 pm

        That’s pretty low expectations. But, yeah… I understand where you’re coming from.

        I’m going out on a limb here: The Tigers are going to win this series. I just have one of those feelings.

        The key to the loss tonight was not shutting down the Twins after the Tigers got 3 in the third. Allowing them to tie up the game in the bottom of the frame changed the momentum back to the Twins.

        The second game changer was the bad call that allowed Punto a free pass. It directly resulted in 2 runs, but more importantly, was the coup de grace that put Galarraga on course to last for only four innings . If Galarraga gets through the fourth with a warranted called-third strike on Punto, the complextion of the 5th is entirely different — and who knows what happens after that. It was a strike and should have ended the inning, but at some point you can’t keep blaming the umps for all our misfortunes. We need to step up and play, and win — despite the bad calls that seem to be plaguing the team.

        • T Smith

          June 30, 2010 at 3:45 pm

          Or not. Guess that limb snapped.

  24. curly and liana

    June 30, 2010 at 1:33 am


  25. kathy

    June 30, 2010 at 1:51 pm

    Someone is watching this game besides me. What do you think about the pitching so far after almost 3 innings.

    • kathy

      June 30, 2010 at 1:53 pm

      Slowey looks good and so does Oliver, imo.

  26. Keith (Mr. X)

    June 30, 2010 at 2:04 pm


    • Keith (Mr. X)

      June 30, 2010 at 2:05 pm

      He ripped the darn cover off the ball there. I don’t see Ordonez score from 1st base often.

  27. TigerfaninTexas

    June 30, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    These starters are just horrible at putting up a zero after we score, it is the main reason they have no wins…Their ERA as a starting staff is pathetic, but, once in and a while it would be nice if they could maintain our momentum after scoring.

  28. TigerfaninTexas

    June 30, 2010 at 2:17 pm

    Liard you want to try catching the are not in their because of your bat.

    • Jerry The Tiger Fan

      June 30, 2010 at 2:47 pm

      Laird should never start when the other side is throwing a right-handed starter. I don’t care if he hit a HR the other night, even a blind squirrel finds a nut here and there. Avila has the nicer/more compact swing, hits the ball harder, gives us a left-handed stick with a little power, and has been Laird’s equal defensively. Ol’ Smoky sure knows how to push the buttons, doesn’t he?

  29. Keith (Mr. X)

    June 30, 2010 at 2:19 pm

    Oliver wiffs Thome. I like it.

  30. kathy

    June 30, 2010 at 2:23 pm

    Wonder how many pitches Oliver will be allowed to pitch.

  31. Kevin in Dallas

    June 30, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    Infield single, error, muffed sac, sac fly, single = 2 runs of Twins baseball. Murder.

    • Jerry The Tiger Fan

      June 30, 2010 at 2:45 pm

      That’s how they do the Tigers most games in Minny. As if the Twins don’t have a potent enough lineup, we flub a sac bunt and turn it into a two-run inning for them. This team (the Tigers) is frustrating to the nth degree. Just once show some backbone against the Twins and take it to them in their park and win a damn series. Its like watching a slightly altered replay every time we play the Twins, the only difference is that the final score varies instead of the result. I”ll bet Gardy wishes he played us 28 times a year instead of 18, it’d likely be another seven wins for his team. The Twins and White Sox both just salivate when they see us coming up on the schedule.

      • Mark in Chicago

        June 30, 2010 at 3:09 pm

        Royals too. Only Cleveland hates to play us.

  32. mcb

    June 30, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    it’s the like the doom of the metrodome carried over.

  33. Kevin in Dallas

    June 30, 2010 at 3:50 pm

    Ugly way to go into a break. Disappointing, but we are only 1.5 games out, 2 at worst starting the weekend. I’ll take that.

    See everyone on Fri night.

  34. Keith (Mr. X)

    June 30, 2010 at 4:07 pm

    I wonder if we bring back Porcello on Friday. With Zumaya gone, we could use his arm (or Oliver’s) in the bullpen for the remainder of the season.

  35. Keith (Mr. X)

    June 30, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    Now we’re at home for the final 9 games before the All-Star break. Next Friday, we’ll get a chance to have some revenge vs Minnesota and take 1st place back at Comerica Park.

    • kathy

      June 30, 2010 at 9:38 pm

      I’lll be at that game on the 10th.

  36. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    June 30, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    Good news for us Mississippi Tiger fans as our favorite Tiger since Marcus Thames and Demitri Young is now a Toledo Mud Hen. Justin Henry was called up from Erie to the Mud Hens and has played one game going 2 for 5 and scoring a run!

  37. kathy

    June 30, 2010 at 10:17 pm

    Just a reminder to vote for your Tiger all-stars. Miggy is only a few thousand votes behind Texiera. Come on now, we can’t have that.

  38. jason

    July 2, 2010 at 12:24 pm

    Kirk Gibson is apparently now the interim manager for the Diamondbacks.

  39. steve

    July 2, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    Hello. I’m heading off to the game. Bilfer how about a post.

  40. Kevin in Dallas

    July 2, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    SEA has one heck of a pitching staff. They don’t hit much, but if our starters get into too much trouble it could be a long weekend.

  41. Steve

    July 2, 2010 at 7:27 pm

    I’m in 345. Not too good but hey at the game is cool. Billfer we (I) miss the game posts. Are you OK. Let’s us know. Steve

  42. Steve

    July 2, 2010 at 7:45 pm

    Hey. Inge started at 252 and has a hit. Kelly is the man here. Seattle has no real hitting. Let’s shut them down.

  43. Kevin in Dallas

    July 2, 2010 at 9:02 pm

    Is Price eating on the air?

  44. Steve

    July 2, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    Great Game. …. I got to move around a little. Saw some bull pen action and now some FIREWORKS !!!!!!!!!

  45. kathy

    July 3, 2010 at 7:40 pm

    Billfer should be pleased. Matt Joyce just hit a GS to get the win over Minnesota!!!

  46. Keith (Mr. X)

    July 3, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    We’re back in 1st!

    • Steve

      July 3, 2010 at 11:40 pm

      Yeah, but its not the same with this blog missing everyday banter and Tiger Fans. I really hope Bill gets this going does anyone know what the story is, I hope all is well with him


  47. kathy

    July 4, 2010 at 9:27 am

    Barring a family emergency, billfer is either extremely busy or his interests have turned elsewhere. Whatever the reason, I hope the blog continues but will understand if it doesn’t.

  48. Jerry The Tiger Fan

    July 4, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    Well…..this one is over. I’m not too upset knowing that Lee was pitching today and that we’ve already taken the first two games of the series in strong fashion. I don’t blame Bonderman for being upset, he was getting squeezed a bit by the home plate ump. However, Lee was also getting squeezed a bit in the bottom of the fourth (particularly agaisnt Cabrera) and he bounced back by getting out of the inning after the first two had reached. Time to move on and get ready for a weak BALT team this week. That series should be an easy two of three, if not a sweep. BALT is dreadful this year and if Scherzer and Oliver continue to pitch well we should handle them quite easily.

    P.S. Bilfer………….hope all is well.

  49. stephen

    July 4, 2010 at 2:52 pm

    Well, the last game post was last Sunday the infamous game where many of us went over-the-top in praise of the Tigers after Bilfer chastised us for being too negative.

    I thought it was all in good fun, but, in retrospect, I can see how it might be seen as mean-spirited and disrespectful by our host. If that was the case, I’d like to apologize. Bilfer has put thousands of hours into this blog and made it a must-read for me every day and I’d hate to think I played a part in making him feel like we don’t appreciate it.

    So Bilfer, sorry and thanks. However, I stand by my comment that if Inge hits .250 and has a OBA north of .333 I will buy him a giant panda.

    • Mark in Chicago

      July 4, 2010 at 10:17 pm

      it is a holiday weekend so billfer is quite possibly out of town or some equivalent. that said, he’s has done a great job on this blog and it’s an everyday read for me as well. i would really miss it if this blog wasn’t around anymore. however, i am preparing to come here one day and see a headline that says “the end” where billfer lets us down easy…

  50. Kevin in Dallas

    July 4, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    Cliff Lee was just sick today. Bondo, not so good. I’m fine with 2/3 and losing to Lee. That Boesch continues to his premiere Lefties is amazing. His left split may be more incredible than AJax’s BABIP streak he had running through early May.

    Let’s feast on Baltimore and go into the Min home series with a chance to put some distance b/w us before the break. That we’d be at the half-way mark and tied for first is a pleasant surprise. We all knew the Central would be weak, but I think that most of us thought that Min and Chi looked better on paper.

  51. colin

    July 4, 2010 at 11:13 pm

    I can’t say I blame him. I must say, Billfer has shown more patience over the years than I would have, were this my blog.

    I hope Bill continues to post about noteworthy Tigers news in the future, because his writing was always the best part of this blog. His perspective always contains a level of wisdom and maturity that is difficult to find in any medium.

  52. kathy

    July 5, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Well, Zoom Zoom has to have a screw inserted in his elbow according to news reports, supposedly to stabilize it.

  53. Jerry The Tiger Fan

    July 5, 2010 at 2:11 pm

    What an UGLY second inning. C’mon guys, this is Baltimore. Giving up 6 runs to them in two innings is just mind-boggling. Please don’t lose this game. This was supposed to be a freebie.

  54. kathy

    July 5, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    Oh, that’s the worst thing to think. Those feebies don’t come along that often. Any MLB team is capable of beating the best on a certain day.

  55. kathy

    July 5, 2010 at 2:42 pm

    This is certainly a different kind of game we’re used to watching. All these runs scored by both sides in just a couple innings.

  56. kathy

    July 5, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    I hope stephen is watching this game just he can watch Brandon Inge getting intentionally walked. Haven’t seen that for a while.

  57. kathy

    July 5, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Avila’s chance for glory goes up in smoke.

  58. kathy

    July 5, 2010 at 4:19 pm

    Player of the Game: Brandon Inge. Betcha.

  59. Jerry The Tiger Fan

    July 5, 2010 at 4:58 pm

    Well..all is well that ends well I suppose. If Valverde had to pick a day to be semi-shaky, this was the correct day. At least we didn’t drop a game to lowly BALT at home after opening up a four run lead after one inning of play. The big question is will Oliver get another start before the All-Star game or is he heading back down after today’s performance? In theory we could come back with Galarraga on Sunday vs. Minnesota instead of Oliver as we have the off day Thursday to provide Armando with the required four days of rest.

  60. kathy

    July 5, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    Oliver wasn’t very good today and this against Baltimore. Armando needs to step up and show us which Armando he is. He’s either very,very good or he’s horrid.

  61. KW

    July 6, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    Does anyone know why Billfer hasn’t been updating the site? Is he done with the game posts because of something that has happened in the comments, or is he just busy?

    Billfer, if you’re out there, how about an update? We all miss you <3

    • The Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

      July 6, 2010 at 6:57 pm

      Maybe we need to get the Bernstein Advantage out to look for him?

      • kathy

        July 6, 2010 at 7:27 pm

        Yes. Call Sam!

    • Kevin in Dallas

      July 6, 2010 at 8:39 pm

      Definitely not the same w/o them.

  62. kathy

    July 6, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    Player of the Game: Inge. What great base running we’ve seen from him.

  63. tc chris

    July 6, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    Hi Bilfer,

    I’m usually a lurker around here, but wanted to say that I appreciate your efforts with this blog and hope that everything’s going okay for you and you’ve enjoyed some time away from the blog.

    Go tigers.

  64. jason

    July 6, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    Say anything about Damon’s low HR output that you want (and I do), but if they are all game winners, I’ll take it!! Huge win there!

    • Keith (Mr. X)

      July 6, 2010 at 11:19 pm

      Yeah, Damon was awesome. He got that lead-off walk to get on base for Miguel Cabrera’s 2 run HR also. He’s the ultimate team player. Loved the after game interview he gave.

    • Jerry The Tiger Fan

      July 7, 2010 at 8:58 am

      Yep…………….since I posted that the had gone 34 days without an RBI he has driven in six in his last seven games with 2 HR. No need to thank me Tiger fans 🙂

  65. Kevin in Dallas

    July 6, 2010 at 11:09 pm

    Fantastic win.

  66. Kevin in Dallas

    July 6, 2010 at 11:11 pm

    BTW – we were 2/10 with RSIP…Bal was 3/17.

  67. Linda

    July 6, 2010 at 11:19 pm

    Great win tonight, but it seems so empty without Billfer.

  68. Kevin in Dallas

    July 7, 2010 at 12:28 am

    Austin Jackson is not getting enough at bats. I’m gonna research this and post more on it tomorrow.

    • kathy

      July 7, 2010 at 9:48 pm

      After that back injury, maybe it’s good he sits once in a while.