According to Good Bull Hunting contributor Hunter Jarvis, A&M will be without the services of yet another starting pitcher for the rest of the 2015 season. Left-hander A.J. Minter came out of last Friday's start against Nebraska after just 70 pitches, and indications are that the injury will result in season-ending Tommy John surgery.
#Aggies pitcher AJ Minter is done for the season and will have Tommy John surgery on his elbow
— Hunter (@OrionHjarvis) March 12, 2015
This news comes just a month into the season, and is a massive blow to an A&M pitching staff that already lost weekend starter Tyler Stubblefield to a season-ending ACL tear just before the season started. The Aggies have gotten off to a perfect 18-0 start so far this year, and pitching depth is certainly one of the strengths of this team, but it is going to be difficult to go into SEC play now without your 2 top starters.
Minter had pitched 21 innings in his 4 starts, posting a record of 2-0 and an ERA of just 0.43. He had struck out 29 batters and walked 8, and opponents were hitting just .213 against him. It's an extremely tough blow to Minter as well, who was looking to make the most of his first season starting on the mound for the maroon and white.
In the meantime, the Aggies will move Grayson Long and Matt Kent, both of whom have been very strong so far in 2015, up a day in the rotation so Long will go on Fridays and Kent on Saturdays. For the time being, true freshman Turner Larkins will take the Sunday starter role, but A&M certainly has options if he struggles there.
As mentioned, A&M does indeed have a deep pitching staff but it is tough for any team, no matter how deep, to lose their 2 top starters and not miss a beat. We'll see how the Aggies respond as they open SEC play this weekend against Auburn at Olsen Field.