Jun 6, 2012; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Felipe Paulino (59) leaves the field after an injury in the first inning against the Minnesota Twins at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-US PRESSWIRE

Felipe Paulino Has a Torn UCL

The Royals announced that Felipe Paulino has been diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament and is out for the year.

He’s still seeking a second opinion, but commonly, the UCL is the ligament replaced during Tommy John surgery.

We know all of this already because Paulino is the fourth Royals pitcher to require the procedure after Joakim Soria, Blake Wood and Danny Duffy all went under the knife.

Paulino opened the season on the disabled list with a sore right elbow but was strong when he returned, allowing just seven earned runs in 37.2 innings while striking out 9.3 batters per nine innings. He looked like he was ready to assume the role of the rotation’s workhorse.

Then in a start against the Twins, he slipped fielding a grounder and landed awkwardly. He was placed on the disabled list again, this time with a groin strain. He made a rehab start in Double A Northwest Arkansas on Wednesday, working three innings. It was assumed that he was near a return to the big leagues.

Instead, it’s another pitcher on the shelf.

That tempers some of the enthusiasm Royals fans were feeling after a strong 7-2 stretch of games that has the team just five games under .500 and 4.5 back of first in the division.

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Tags: AL Central Baseball Danny Duffy Felipe Paulino Joakim Soria Kansas City Kansas City Royals KC KC Royals MLB Royals

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