This isn’t the San Francisco Giants needed knowing their pitching staff is already thin to start the 2018 season. Per ESPN.com, closer Mark Melancon was placed on the 10-day disabled list Thursday with a right elbow flexor strain. According to the story, the move was made retroactive to March 26. Right-hander Reyes Moronta was recalled from Triple-A to fill Melancon’s roster spot.
He becomes the third high-profile pitcher to hit the disabled list at the start of the season for the Giants, joining ace Madison Bumgarner and starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija.
The 33-year-old Melancon agreed to a four-year, $62 million contract with the San Francisco Giants in 2016. Melancon began the 2017 season with bad footing as he blew a save opportunity that marked the day Madison Bumgarner hit two home runs on opening day against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Mark Melancon allowed two runs in the ninth inning; the second run he allowed was the walk off single from Chris Owings as the Giants lost 5-6. After being placed on the DL, Melancon lost the closer position to newly acquired Sam Dyson.
On September 4, 2017, it was announced Mark Melancon would undergo surgery to alleviate chronic exertional compartment syndrome in his right forearm.
The San Francisco Giants organization had hoped the 2018 would be different for Melancon. In 2017 he went 1-2 with 11 saves and a 4.50 ERA in 30 innings pitched. He blew five save opportunities. A four-time All-Star, the right-hander has 179 saves and a 2.72 ERA in nine major league seasons.
Bumgarner broke his hand on a line drive in his final spring training start for the San Francisco Giants. It was the second consecutive year the left-hander has been hurt. He is expected to miss six to eight weeks with this injury.
“It’s tough. But I can handle it,” Bumgarner said via the Chicago Tribune. “These guys can handle it. This obviously was not what I was expecting out of my last start. But it happened and I can deal with it.”