Paxton left his April 6 start — his first since returning to Seattle on a 1-year, $8.5 million deal — with left elbow discomfort. Paxton received a second opinion Monday, when the need for surgery was confirmed.
“It’s a blow,” Servais said. “This is a guy who is a top-end starter, a top-of-the-rotation type of guy. Certainly nothing against our other guys, but they just don’t have the experience and the track record that Pax has accumulated over his time in the big leagues. It’s disappointing to lose him. On the flip side, you can’t do anything about it.”
The 32-year-old Paxton pitched for Seattle from 2013 to 2018, going 41-26 with a 3.42 ERA. He spent the past two seasons with the New York Yankees, but was limited to five starts in 2020 because of a left flexor strain.
“I feel terrible for Pax and having to deal with this one again,” Servais said. “If I know Pax, he’ll take the right attitude with it and go forward and try to make the best out of it and come back stronger than ever.”
Seattle hoped the reunion with Paxton would provide a steady presence to what has become a six-man rotation early in the season. Instead, the veteran’s season is over after just 1 1/3 innings.
“We knew when we signed him, he’d had some things he’s had to battle with throughout his career,” Servais said. “I thought we were in a great position from how he was throwing in spring training that we were going to get off on a good start. Certainly, we had to watch his workload as the season went on. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out.”
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