Feyereisen has shoulder surgery

December 9th, 2022

ST. PETERSBURG -- Rays reliever J.P. Feyereisen underwent right shoulder surgery on Wednesday, the club announced, another tough blow on the injury front for Tampa Bay.

Feyereisen’s procedure involved Dr. Keith Meister performing a “general cleanup of the rotator cuff and labrum,” the team announced Thursday afternoon. He will begin rehabbing with the goal of resuming throwing in four months, according to the club. It will take a similarly long time for Feyereisen to work his way back from that shutdown, meaning he'll be out of game action for the entire first half and likely won't be all the way back until late August.

Feyereisen did not pitch for the Rays after June 2 due to a right shoulder impingement. He was placed on the 15-day injured list on June 3 and moved to the 60-day IL on July 4. He hoped to return before the end of the season, even going to Triple-A Durham to face hitters in late August, but he was ruled out in early September due to an uncommon injury.

Feyereisen explained in August that he was shut down by a bone bruise that occurred because his shoulder “was not being held tight enough by the muscles around it.” He continued to feel discomfort when he resumed throwing, then received a season-ending injection on Sept. 6. He experienced further right shoulder discomfort while playing catch earlier this week, which led to surgery.

“It's basically like a nail on a hammer, and you're just sitting there and you're tapping it every time I threw a pitch,” Feyereisen added on Aug. 19. “Just kept tapping it, and sooner or later it gets pounded all the way in and you can't do it anymore.”

The 29-year-old reliever got off to an incredible start last season, allowing just one unearned run with 25 strikeouts and only five walks in 24 1/3 innings over his first 22 appearances of the year. Since earned runs became an official stat in 1913, his 24 1/3 innings were the most for any pitcher without an earned run allowed in an entire season. While recording his 0.00 ERA, Feyereisen permitted only seven hits, all singles.

The Rays acquired Feyereisen and right-hander Drew Rasmussen from the Brewers for shortstop Willy Adames and righty Trevor Richards in May 2021. While Adames has continued to thrive in Milwaukee, Rasmussen emerged this year as one of the Rays’ top four starters and Feyereisen has been lights-out when healthy. In 56 outings for Tampa Bay over the past two years, Feyereisen has put together a 1.48 ERA and a 0.98 WHIP while recording four saves over 61 innings.

The Rays still have plenty of bullpen options for next season, but this news could push them to pursue further right-handed relief depth.

Top late-inning relievers Pete Fairbanks and Jason Adam are due to return, as are lefties Jalen Beeks, Colin Poche and Garrett Cleavinger. Tampa Bay also has right-handers Shawn Armstrong, Ryan Thompson and Calvin Faucher, recent Rule 5 Draft pick Kevin Kelly and rehabbing relief prospect Colby White on the 40-man roster. All-Star reliever Andrew Kittredge will be out well into 2023 after undergoing Tommy John surgery in June.