There was a time when Austin Martin was considered one of the top prospects in the game. While there is still time for the Minnesota Twins prospect to live up to his promise, he needs to spend time on the diamond.
That may not happen in 2023. According to Aaron Gleeman from The Athletic, Martin has a sprained UCL in his right elbow and is being shut down. While a timetable for his return has yet to be determined, a sprained UCL typically leads to Tommy John surgery. Such a procedure would likely shut Martin down for the year.
Another tough break for Minnesota Twins’ prospect Austin Martin
The fifth overall selection in the 2020 MLB Draft, Martin was one of the key pieces in the deal that sent Jose Berrios to Toronto. He had performed well at Double-A during his professional debut in 2021 and was expected to quickly ascend to the majors. Instead, he struggled in a repeat showing at Double-A last season, although injuries certainly played a part in those issues.
But there were reasons to hope for a bounceback in 2023. Martin had performed well during his time in the Arizona Fall League, posting a .374/.454/.482 batting line with a homer and six doubles in 97 plate appearances, stealing ten bases. That strong showing had continued into the beginning part of camp until his latest injury struck.
Martin will be 25 years old heading into next season. There would still be plenty of time for him to develop into the player he was expected to become. The problem is that Martin needs to be able to stay on the diamond for that to happen. To this point, that is his biggest weakness.
Minnesota Twins prospect Austin Martin has a sprained UCL in his right elbow. His 2023 campaign may be over before it had a chance to begin.