New York Mets reliever Bryce Montes de Oca underwent surgery to remove loose bodies in his right elbow on Wednesday but during the procedure, it was discovered that his UCL was insufficient and needed to be revised as well, meaning the right-hander underwent Tommy John surgery.
The team announced the results on Thursday just hours before the first pitch of Opening Day, adding that they will provide further updates when appropriate. However, it is a foregone conclusion that he will miss the entire 2023 season.
The 26-year-old, who lit up radar guns through spring training by topping out at 101.9 mph, is the organization’s No. 22 ranked prospect but was in contention for a spot in the bullpen during the early portions of spring training. However, he was shelved on March 13 due to what was at the time labeled as a stress reaction in that right elbow.
Montes de Oca made his major-league debut last season, appearing in three games, but was placed on the injured list in September due to hamstring tightness. He was subsequently designated to the minors upon his reactivation.
His development is just the latest bit of bad news for the Mets’ bullpen, which will have to piece together a late-game plan after Edwin Diaz was lost for the 2023 season after tearing the patellar tendon in his right knee during the World Baseball Classic.