Gore placed on IL after exiting with sore elbow

July 26th, 2022

When Padres left-hander exited his relief outing early against the Tigers in Detroit on Monday night, the elbow soreness he felt could have pointed to a number of ailments. Gore showed up to the park on Tuesday feeling "OK," though, which allows some cautious optimism.

"It's not until we get home and get some [imaging] going on him that we'll know," manager Bob Melvin said prior to Tuesday's game. "He's not going to throw today, but it's hopefully encouraging that he doesn't feel too bad."

The injury still forced the Padres to place the rookie hurler on the 15-day injured list with left elbow inflammation. They recalled right-hander Dinelson Lamet from Triple-A El Paso to take his spot.

Gore, a standout rookie during the first half, had recently transitioned into a relief role as the Padres looked to monitor his workload. He pitched parts of the fourth and fifth innings in the Padres' 12-4 loss to the Tigers at Comerica Park.

It was in the fifth inning when Gore's velocity dipped, and he exited alongside a team trainer.

“He just felt the soreness in his elbow,” Melvin said. “That's the move you make. We saw him do that, we went out there and got him out of there. He'll be treated the next couple days. Our doctors will take a look at him when we get home. We'll see what the steps are after that.”

Gore, once the Padres' top prospect, has a 4.50 ERA this season in 16 outings. The left-hander got off to an excellent start, having notched a 2.50 ERA in his first 10 appearances while emerging as the NL Rookie of the Year favorite.

He'd fallen into a bit of a rut lately, however. Gore's stuff hasn’t been quite as sharp, and his fastball velocity took a small dip, likely as the result of an increased workload this season. But Melvin noted that Gore hadn't been experiencing any trouble related to his elbow until Monday night.

The Padres have made every effort to preserve Gore for the stretch run, too, skipping a turn or two of his in the rotation and moving him to the bullpen.

"Over the course of the season, you have aches and pains, and nothing feels great," Melvin said. "But we've given him some extended time off, given him some breaks, put him in the bullpen, limited his pitches. This popped up today. We felt we needed to get him out of there."

Losing Gore is the first major blow this season for a rotation that has been relatively healthy all year. On top of that, Gore is a 23-year-old left-hander with a very high ceiling, so, naturally, he’s an an intriguing trade piece ahead of the Aug. 2 Deadline.

"He'll see our doctors when we get home," Melvin said. "We'll treat him symptomatically here the next couple days, and we'll see where we go for it once we get home."