PITTSBURGH — Well-regarded Toronto Blue Jays pitching prospect Adonys Cardona underwent surgery this week to repair a broken elbow sustained while throwing a pitch for single-A Lansing.
The 20-year-old Venezuelan right-hander, signed as an international free agent for $2.8 million in 2010, left the mound Monday after facing two batters in an 8-4 loss to Dayton. His olecranon — the bony point of the elbow — broke cleanly in two, ending his season.
Dr. Steve Mirabello, an orthopaedic surgeon for the Blue Jays, performed the operation, which involved inserting a screw to strengthen the joint.
“Dr. Mirabello feels that this injury could stabilize an area that had been compromised in the past where he’s had some stress reactions,” said Tony LaCava, the Blue Jays assistant general manager responsible for the farm system. “We’ve shut him down a couple of different times because there was a stress reaction in his arm.
“This is a kid whose arm may have been too fast for his own good. Bones are bones and if your arm works so fast, the bones can’t withstand that kind of arm speed. He’s a victim of his own ability in that way.”
Cardona, six-foot-two and 200 pounds, throws in the upper 90s and is considered one of the Blue Jays’ most promising prospects in the lower levels of the farm system.
Meanwhile, the Blue Jays have promoted a pair of 2013 draft picks.
Left-hander Matt Boyd, a sixth-round pick out of Oregon State who posted a 4-0 mark with a 0.29 ERA in five starts at single-A Dunedin, is now at double-A New Hampshire.
Right-hander Kendall Graveman, an eighth-round pick out of Mississippi State who went 2-0 with a 0.34 ERA in four starts at single-A Lansing, moved up to advanced-A Dunedin.
“We’re going to let them seek their level, we’re going to find out where they belong,” said LaCava, who added that Boyd “has put himself on the radar. Left-handed with a really good feel for pitching, he just continues to get people out.”