Ivan Nova Undergoes Tommy John surgery


Apr 19, 2014; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York Yankees starting pitcher Ivan Nova (47) throws a pitch against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

According to the team’s official website, Yankees pitcher Ivan Nova underwent his previously planned Tommy John surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right elbow on Tuesday.

The surgery was performed in Pensacola, Florida by Doctor James Andrews. It was, according to the team, a success.

Nova suffered a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow earlier this month during a start in Tampa Bay against the Rays. In four starts this season, he was 2-2 with a 8.27 ERA, 12 strikeouts, and eight walks.

After he was first recommended surgery by Yankees’ team doctor Chris Ahmad, Nova was advised the same by Andrews. It was officially announced on Thursday by the team that the 27-year old would undergo surgery.

Tommy John surgery typically takes between 12 and 18 months to recover from, which means that Nova will — obviously — miss all of this season, and likely most or all of next season. Yankees’ manager Joe Girardi announced last week that lefty Vidal Nuno will at least temporarily replace Nova in the rotation, but the bigger concern that Girardi needs to address regards who, if not Nuno, will be Nova’s long-term replacement.

And, with Michael Pineda out the next 3-to-4 weeks, the Yankees might have to look outside of the organization — either to a trade or to free agency — to add another arm to their suddenly-depleted starting rotation.

In 2013, Nova had arguably the best season of any Yankees starting pitcher. He went 9-6 with a 3.10 ERA and 116 strikeouts in 20 starts.