The Saline Courier Weekend

Wiggins out for year, to have Tommy John surgery

- Special to the Courier

FAYETTEVIL­LE – Arkansas junior pitcher Jaxon Wiggins will undergo Tommy John surgery and miss the 2023 season.

Wiggins underwent an MRI on Wednesday where it was determined that he suffered a tear of his ulnar collateral ligament (UCL). His surgery will be performed by Dr. Keith Meister, the head team physician for the Texas Rangers. A specific date for surgery has not been establishe­d at this time.

“We feel bad for Jaxon,” Arkansas head baseball Coach Dave Van Horn said. “He worked incredibly hard over the offseason and was prepared to lead our rotation. While we are certainly disappoint­ed that he won’t be able to see the results of his hard work on the mound this season, our priority is his health and recovery.”

Wiggins was a crucial part of an Arkansas pitching staff that set a new school record with 674 strikeouts in 2022. The right-hander made 17 appearance­s, including 15 starts, on the mound last season as a sophomore, posting a 6-3 record with a 6.55 ERA and 82 strikeouts over 66.0 innings.

The Roland, Oklahoma, native logged three quality starts, including six scoreless innings with four strikeouts in a start against SEC East foe Kentucky on March 20. Wiggins racked up multiple strikeouts in 16 of his 17 outings on the year, highlighte­d by a career-high nine punch outs in a start against SEC

West rival LSU on April 16.

For his career, Wiggins is 9-4 with a 6.17 ERA, 110 strikeouts and four saves in 89.0 innings over 34 appearance­s (19 starts) as a Razorback. He is ranked No. 41 in D1baseball’s 2023 MLB Draft College Top 100, No. 55 in MLB Pipeline’s 2023 MLB Draft Top 100 and listed as the No. 61 overall prospect in Baseball America’s 2023 draft rankings.

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