Dustin McGowan To Have Season Ending Surgery, David Purcey To Take His Place

Adam GreuelSenior Analyst IJuly 26, 2008

The Toronto Blue Jays won their fifth straight game today, but the bad news about pitcher Dustin  McGowan has overshadowed the celebration.

News broke today that McGowan will need season ending surgery to repair fraying of the labrum in his throwing shoulder. He will also have his rotator cuff examined during the surgery to determine if there is further damage.

McGowan made his last start on June 8th, he only lasted 66 pitches against the Baltimore Orioles because of the injury to his arm. The surgery will be performed by Dr. Timothy Kremchek.

Jays general manager J.P. Ricciardi indicated on Saturday that if McGowan's rotator cuff does not require attention, then it is possible that he could return to the team by next year's Spring Training.

McGowan went 6-7 this year with a 4.37 ERA in 111 and 1/3 innings pitched but those stats may be skewered due to the injury to his shoulder.

This puts a big hit on the Jays chances this year as they are on a five game winning streak and are now only 6.5 games back of a play-off spot. While it is unlikely that they mount a comeback, having Dustin McGowan in the rotation would help.

Young lefty David Purcey will be replacing McGowan for the time being and possibly for the rest of the year if he performs well. Purcey went 6 innings today, giving up three runs and earning himself his first big league victory.

This news comes after Jesse Litsch was demoted to AAA Syracuse due to his recent struggles. Thankfully, it is being reported that Litsch will likely be back after a start or two in the minors and John Parrish would be sent down to make room.

If what is supposed to happen does happen then a rotation of Halladay-Burnett-Marcum-Litch-Purcey will have to get it done.

Also, if Burnett is traded then the Jays will likely have the youngest rotation in baseball for next year. Marcum, Purcey and McGowan will all be 27 while Litsch will be 24 and Halladay would be the greybeard of the group at 32.

Here is to a quick recovery Dustin!