You really can’t get into everything else without addressing the suffering. Yes, Shohei Ohtani’s elbow injury has all kinds of ramifications, from his financial situation to his destination and legacy, but I’ll cut him some slack.

Because, at the moment, everyone is kind of in a tizzy, and that’s okay. Truth be told it is basically inevitable.

The most outstanding baseball player of recent times was sidelined on Wednesday with what was initially described as arm fatigue. We had seen and heard that specific reason before, so it was a situation worth monitoring, but probably not a major situation.

It will happen soon.

by the end of los angeles angels‘ doubleheader against the Cincinnati Reds, the Japanese pitching/hitting/mind-blowing sensation was diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament, confirming the painful truth that baseball is less taxing on the elbow than any other body part. Kind and everything had suddenly changed, in the blink of an eye.

This was absolutely sad news. The reality that the Angels can’t put together a winning season — no matter what — without faltering prevails and that’s its own story. But Ohtani had become baseball’s happy place, as those who loved the diamond case got used to the fact that yes, we were watching history unfold before us. And no, this was not a dream that we would soon recover from.

Not only that, he has become and remains the biggest story of this season, with the idea of ​​where he can go and what he can do in free agency, the pennant race and World Series prospects, and the teams they are on. Overwhelming, you know, really win a lot.

Ohtani started Wednesday against the Reds by scoring two runs in the first inning and then stepped up to hit his baseball-leading 44th home run of the campaign. So far, so much Showtime. And then that was it.

After consulting with manager Phil Nevin and an instructor, he hurried from the mound to the dugout, an expression of concern on his face, and baseball worried along with him. He went 1 of 5 shots in the second half of the doubleheader, but as details emerged about his elbow ailment, he looked about as pleased as you might expect with how his day went.

Over the past months, when the baseball world thought of Ohtani, it thought of history, of Babe Ruth and how this was the modern version of it, of impossible things not only being plausible but existing on a daily basis. It was fun to think.

Now there’s related language about disappointing things, Tommy John and rehab and the prospect of a fall – and the question has to be asked whether his workload was managed properly.

This isn’t the time to answer specifically because it’s unlikely that Ohtani himself, or his doctors, or the Angels, or the endless list of general managers who would love to have him have a winter run, know exactly how this will shake out. .

The announcement said nothing more than to say that he would not pitch again this season, leaving an opportunity for him to continue chasing a mighty home run tally. His current rate sees him on his way to 59 dingers, and Aaron Judge’s new mark of 62 remains an outside shot.

However, there are other considerations as well. If surgery is needed, the sooner obviously the better. as Fox Sports Ben Verlander toldNothing owed much to the Angels, not that his all-round excellence resulted in nothing more than a 61–67 record, good for only fourth place in the AL West, going 5–16 since the trade deadline. with clip.

[Everything you need to know about Shohei Ohtani’s UCL tear, what’s next, free-agency impact]

The Angels are now on track to miss the postseason once again and slide below .500 baseball for the eighth consecutive year, all of which have also come with mike trout in Anaheim.

Money also plays a big part in the Ohtani narrative, but in a slightly different way than we usually see injuries affecting cash considerations. When the prospect of a $600 million-plus deal for Ohtani arose, the first thing that came to mind was how someone could be in line to get paid that much – yet somehow be underpaid. can?

A lights-out All-Star level pitcher, as well as a middle-of-the-order superstar who throws .304 with tremendous power, plus a must-see, show-stopping, butts-in-the-seat-guaranteed -stadium-filler (if promoted correctly)? Man there are three superstars together.

Part of the anticipation of the free-agency frenzy was the nagging feeling that at least one GM would look at his talent and give an “over the moon” analysis of what the franchise should offer.

Despite this, someone will still have to pay a high price, although the $600 million talk will probably come down somewhat.

Teams are still pursuing him with unprecedented fervor, and one twist to it all is that no one knows what Ohtani wants from a new club, except that he craves victory. Given that the basic act of adding Ohtani to any squad greatly increases that possibility – unless you’re an angel, I guess – the options are numerous.

It’s hard to imagine Ohtani pitching in 2024, which in itself would make this a season that would lose a bit of its luster, and cause some pause for thought.

Location-wise, finances-wise and ambition-wise, the Los Angeles Dodgers would seem to be in top position, but if it wasn’t locked down before it sure as it isn’t now.

Let’s find some positives. Surgery, even to the ulnar collateral ligament, doesn’t mean what it used to. Pitchers can, will, do bounce back from this, and some of them have had good results even after going under the knife a second time. If so, perhaps it’s just meant to be a reminder that games with unpredictability and greatness should be enjoyed at the same time, because anything can happen.

Does that help? Are you feeling any better? Didn’t think so.

Martin Rogers is a columnist for Fox Sports and author of the Fox Sports Insider newsletter. Follow him on Twitter @mrrogersfox And Subscribe to the Daily Newsletter,

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