This continues our series where I address the biggest remaining offseason questions for the Braves, moving on to one of the most melancholy stories on the team, and really all of baseball for that matter. If you missed any of the previous pieces of this series, click the links below.
- Will Marcell Ozuna be in the starting lineup on Opening Day?
- Is Matt Olson even the best backup plan for Freddie Freeman?
- Who will be the Opening Day centerfielder?
- Who will round out the starting rotation?
- Could the Braves make a change at shortstop once the lockout ends?
The Timeline for Mike Soroka’s Injury
I still constantly get questions regarding Mike Soroka’s injury and when he might return, and I have consistently given the same response. I highly doubt we see him pitch in 2022. When I interviewed Dr. Mark Drakos, an orthopedic surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery, he shined a grim light on the situation, stating that the way Soroka re-injured himself is not normal and that the results for an Achilles that has been torn for a second time are not as good. Dr. Drakos also said that it would be at least a full 12 months before Soroka is able to throw off the mound again.
Soroka tore his Achilles in late June of 2022, so in a perfect world, he will begin pitching again in early July. However, a lot of rehab will be involved, and the Braves will be sure to take things extraordinarily cautiously. So realistically, Soroka won’t be tossing off the mound for the Braves until August/September at the earliest, and even that feels optimistic.
Perhaps if the Braves are desperate for starting pitching and Soroka’s rehab goes along perfectly, we could see him be apart of the playoff push — either out of the bullpen or as a starter. However, the Braves have to go into 2022 with the expectation that Soroka will not be a contributor at any point. If he does end up pitching, fantastic, but his contributions will just be icing on the cake.