Tommy John Surgery Sidelines Rock Falls Star

Taylor Eikenberry of Rock Falls, Illinois is one of the state's top pitchers. He helped lead the Rock Falls Rockets to the state championship game and committed to play for Baylor University on a baseball scholarship, but unfortunately an injury has sidelined this standout pitcher. Eikenberry will need Tommy John surgery to fulfill his dream of playing for Baylor.

Taylor Eikenberry is a 6'0" left-handed pitcher who will be sidelined for the next six to eight months after a planned surgery on his pitching elbow. Taylor was having some discomfort in his elbow, and it was determined a torn ligament was causing bones to rub together. According to Eikenberry's father the plan is to possibly have the surgery done on Tuesday.

"Right now we're just all taking this in as a family," Wayne Eikenberry said. "We're not 100% sure if someone in Chicago is going to do it or if a team doctor from the Texas Rangers could do the procedure."

No one is really sure how Taylor got the injury, but as a parent Wayne Eikenberry really watched how his son was being utilized.

"Sometimes people say kids throw too many curveballs, too many innings," Wayne Eikenberry said. "We all would like to think no coach would take advantage of a kid's arm, and I'm not saying they did that to my son, but it's just something coaches, players and parents should be aware of. When we first found out everyone wanted to place blame and we're not like that. One doctor told us it could be hereditary, but some like to place the blame on being over pitched. "

Taylor Eikenberry was going to be the number one ace for the Rockets this year, but now he's on the sidelines giving advice to sophomore Jake Junis and junior Dylan DeVries, both of whom will be counted on to make key starts for the Rockets.

"This is real hard for me," Eikenberry acknowledged. "I was so excited to play this season, but now I have to support my teammates which isn't a bad thing either. I know there's a select few that have been given the ability to get an offer from a major program. My advice to them is to enjoy it all. Never take anything for granted. Look at all your schools before making a choice."

Eikenberry picked Baylor over North Carolina, Virginia, and Louisville. And both of his parents have been offering plenty of support.

"I'm going to redshirt next year; I'm very optimistic I'll come back even stronger," Eikenberry said. "My mom has done a lot of research for me, and said some players come back a lot better."

Wayne Eikenberry admits being a parent in this situation is tough.

"We just tell Taylor this is a bump in the road," Eikenberry stated. "Get your work boots back on and get back to work. This will all work out. So many people have advice but I would really recommend college. I want him to be marketable when he needs a job. Without his degree, that's going to be tough."

When Eikenberry decides to have his surgery, we'll keep you updated.

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