I don't know how urgent this news is with the 80 game suspension for PED usage on the table. But it certainly adds another chapter to the Tatis Jr. saga and his evolving relationship with the Padres.
Everyone knows he's due about $330M over the next 12 seasons. Everyone knows the 2022 club would be better off with him in the lineup every day. And everyone knows this has been a challenging season for the youngster at several moments for completely different reasons. What's done is done.
The big silver lining hanging in the balance is that Tatis is in control of where things go. Does he come back a better leader and teammate? Is he training in the time off to step in right away? Is he building up and maintaining relationships in the organization? Is he supporting his teammates despite his own personal adversity? The spotlight can impact a lot of change and there's strong hope Tatis takes it positively. That's definitely an option.
And if it happens, holy shit is he about to do even more damage when he comes back. That's what I'd be thinking about as a Padres fan. Redemption is capable of breeding exponential growth. Is Tatis the guy to tap into it?
I think so.
He sure seems like the competitive type who wants to dominate all facets of the game. It would be smart money to bet on him.
In that spirit, it sure sounds like this shoulder surgery development is a step in the right direction. I'll talk more through this with Jake on Thursday's Starting 9 about players making their own medical decisions. My understanding is that it's become more commonplace over the last decade+ for players to pursue their own independent medical evaluations. I honestly don't know the true significance behind ignoring the club in favor of your own doctor. Subscribe to the show so you can learn with me on Thursday.
For now, this one's really interesting regardless of motivations because I think it speaks more to Tatis's mindset throughout this year. Maybe he was holding out on it this whole time because he really thought he'd be able to come back and help the club into the playoffs. Maybe he was stubborn because he wanted to preserve the hope he could help the Padres win in 2022. Maybe he was willing to play and suffer through pain to get into October.
That's the version of Fernando Tatis Jr. I choose to believe in and you guys are welcome to join me.