Dustin May: Needing Second Elbow Surgery Was ‘Gut-Wrenching Feeling’

Originally published by DodgerBlue.com

Dustin May looked to make an impact for the Los Angeles Dodgers in his first full year back from Tommy John surgery, but his 2023 season was cut short due to more right elbow trouble.

May threw just 48 innings over nine starts before sustaining a right flexor pronator strain that required season-ending surgery. He also had a Tommy John revision for a Grade 2 sprain of his ulnar collateral ligament (UCL).

It was the second major operation for May in 26 months as he previously underwent Tommy John surgery during the 2021 season.

The right-hander said he was devastated upon finding out that he would need another surgery, via Bill Plunkett of the Southern California News Group:

“You have no idea,” the 26-year-old right-hander said with all the weariness that two major elbow surgeries 26 months apart will bring.

“It was definitely not what I wanted to hear when I heard that I needed surgery again. … You can understand the first one. It’s, ‘Okay, I’m going to go get fixed and then I’m going to be fine and I’ll be able to stay healthy and compete.’ Then as soon as I get back basically, the same thing happens again. It’s just a gut-wrenching feeling. It’s like the rug keeps getting pulled out from under my feet. All I want to do is go and compete and I keep being told I can’t.”

May added that it only took a brief amount of time to come to terms with the diagnosis and he vowed to return to the mound as soon as possible:

“I was definitely very frustrated, especially in LA after I got my MRI results,” May said. “I was very frustrated just in the moment. Then it was like – it took me a day and then I was, ‘What am I mad about? I can’t do anything about this. This is the cards I’ve been dealt. I’ve got to go do what I gotta do and hopefully be back whenever I can.’”

May’s timeline for a return from his latest surgery is projected to be about 12 months. He could potentially be back on a mound for the Dodgers at some point during the second half of the 2024 season, but there are no guarantees.

May went 4-1 with a 2.63 ERA, 3.23 FIP and 0.94 WHIP in 48 innings pitched last year prior to undergoing season-ending elbow surgery. In parts of five seasons with the Dodgers, he owns a 12-9 record, 3.10 ERA, 3.76 FIP and 1.05 WHIP over 46 games (34 starts).

Dustin May ‘feeling really good’

May has resumed throwing and recently said that he is making progress while trying to keep a positive mindset while navigating yet another long rehab.

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