Cardinals right-hander Lance Lynn will miss the entire 2016 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery, according to a team announcement.
The loss of Lynn is a major one for a Cardinals' team that currently has question marks in its rotation as a result of the potential departure of free agent John Lackey and the ongoing rehab of Adam Wainwright. St. Louis currently has Carlos Martinez, Michael Wacha and Jaime Garcia slotted in behind Wainwright, and is likely to pursue further rotation help in free agency and trade talks this winter.
Lynn, 28, had a very strong season for the Cardinals, posting a 3.03 ERA in 31 starts and logging more than 175 innings for the fourth straight season. He will be paid $7.5 million next season as part of the 3-year, $22 million extension he signed last winter, and is slated to hit free agency after the 2017 season, when he will pitch again.
St. Louis is expected to pursue a reunion with Lackey and could look to add another veteran starter, with Jake Peavy being one name that has interested the Cards in the past. It is currently unclear if the loss of Lynn will cause the team to pursue high-end free agent starters like Zack Greinke, David Price, Johnny Cueto or Jordan Zimmermann.