Twins Pitcher Makes Season Debut (Sort Of) After 2nd Tommy John Surgery

It'll be a new role for Minnesota Twins pitcher Chris Paddack: Coming back from his second career Tommy John surgery, he'll be working out of the bullpen this time around, after spending the first four years of his big league career as a starter. 

And after 16 months of waiting, that new career started on Sunday. 

Paddack's season debut, however, didn't quite go as planned. He was summoned into the game on Sunday to replace starter Joe Ryan in the 7th inning. But while he was jogging out to the mound, the rains came, and after a 50-minute rain delay, Paddack was replaced by Louie Varland without actually recording a single pitch. 

No worries though. He'll be ready for the opportunity when it comes along next, and he can't wait to show his stuff out of the 'pen.

“I think coming out of the bullpen (this past week during one minor league rehab outing) changed my big league career,” Paddack said. He seemed to find a new gear. 

The 27-year-old was acquired by the Twins to start the 2022 season, but after just five outings he went down to the elbow injury which required another Tommy John. He has a 4.20 ERA in his major league career, in 66 appearances (65 off them starts). He'll look to be a factor for the Twins in the playoffs as a hard-throwing reliever. 

Photo: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports