East Carolina University pitcher and top MLB draft prospect Jeff Hoffman will undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery next week.

The news was officially announced on Wednesday by ECU head coach Billy Goodwin.

Hoffman, a Shaker High School graduate, was pegged to be one of the top five picks in this June’s draft. He had missed at least his last two starts with arm soreness, but a meeting with Dr. James Andrews revealed a small tear and the need for Tommy John.

It’s an unbelievably bad break for Hoffman, who was 3-3 with a 2.94 in 10 starts this year. He also had 72 strikeouts in 67.1 innings. Hoffman has a fastball that has reached 98 miles per hour.

"It was disappointing for all of us to hear the news regarding Jeff," Godwin said. "After speaking with Jeff, he and his family have decided this is the best thing for him to do at this time. We are hopeful he will have a quick recovery and be back on the mound very soon. Jeff is one of our leaders on the field, inside the clubhouse and is a tremendous competitor who will definitely be missed."

Hoffman will undoubtedly still be drafted this June. Teams may still take him high because of his talent and ability, but Hoffman could always return to ECU for his senior year and try to regain his top draft stock if he falls further than he hopes.

Perfect Game’s Frankie Piliere reports that there are clubs with picks in the No. 5-10 range that are still considering Hoffman.

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