We typically think of the recovery time from Tommy John surgery as being between 12-to-18 months, but Shae Simmons' story shows why every case is unique. He went under the knife for reconstructive elbow surgery in February of 2015. Shortly after beginning a rehab assignment at Triple-A in May of 2016, Simmons experienced triceps tightness, and he was shut down again shortly after his return to Atlanta that September. Other setbacks included: lat tendinitis, forearm soreness, a flexor strain and shoulder soreness. Simmons returned to the major leagues with Seattle in September. After enjoying initial success, Simmons endured some hiccups in his final few outings (six earned runs in 2.1 innings), leading the Mariners to non-tender him. He flashed back-end potential during his time in Atlanta, but 2014 is a lifetime ago in baseball and it seems especially far away for Simmons given the injury saga.
The Mariners declined to tender Simmons a contract for 2018, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports. Simmons' road back from Tommy John surgery was riddled with setbacks, with the rehab essentially taking the better part of three years. He enjoyed some initial success upon his return last season, but fell apart late with six earned runs allowed in his final three appearances (2.1 innings). The right-hander will have something to prove in spring training wherever he lands.
Simmons fired a scoreless eighth inning in Wednesday's 8-6 loss to the Rangers, striking out the side. Simmons has been a pleasant late-season surprise for manager Scott Servais, as he's strung together six consecutive scoreless efforts. He's allowed just one hit over that span while also racking up seven strikeouts, an impressive overall tally after he missed the majority of the season with a forearm injury.
Simmons (forearm) fired a scoreless ninth inning in Sunday's 10-2 win over the Athletics, allowing a hit and recording two strikeouts. Simmons made his long-awaited 2017 debut after battling through a forearm injury for the majority of the campaign. The 27-year-old right-hander was impressive during his stints with the Braves in 2014 and 2016, so the Mariners will gauge his potential value as a bullpen arm during the balance of September.
Simmons (forearm) was activated from the 60-day DL on Friday. Simmons has not pitched in the big leagues since 2016 with the Braves, as his forearm injury cost him most of the season. He has a chance to be a setup arm in the long term, but will likely be deployed in low-leverage spots in September.
Simmons (forearm, shoulder) fired a scoreless seventh inning in Triple-A Tacoma's loss to Memphis on Friday, his first appearance for the Rainiers. As per Tacoma play-by-play man Mike Curto, Simmons hit 97 mph on the gun during his outing, certainly an encouraging indicator of the health of both his shoulder and forearm. Simmons' most recent game action had come with Double-A Arkansas on July 14 before shoulder soreness put a pause to his rehab assignment.