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Arm injury likely to derail Matt Meyer's season with the Rochester Royals

Jun. 11—ROCHESTER — It appears that Matt Meyer's summer of baseball in 2024 is over before it even started.

Meyer, an elite left-handed pitcher for the Rochester Royals amateur baseball team, is a former minor-league pitcher who helped the team win a Class B state championship in 2022. He then missed most of last season with an arm injury and now it looks like 2024 could end the same way.

Meyer has yet to pitch this season while letting his arm rest. He recently received word of an MRI, and it wasn't great news. He has a full tear in the flexor muscle of his left forearm and a minor tear in the ulnar collateral ligament of his elbow.

"The initial diagnosis is probably six to eight weeks off again, kind of like last summer," Meyer said.

He is also likely to have an injection in his elbow, the last resort for a muscle-healing injury before surgery.

"It's non-surgical, which is good, but it's another summer of not being able to play baseball," Meyer said. "That's two summers in a row where I've been on the shelf, which is frustrating."

Even if Meyer was able to return in 6-8 weeks, he would miss the rest of the regular season for the Royals. That would put him back around the start of the section playoffs, but he would still need to build his arm strength back up.

Meyer is discouraged, but he noted at least his arm wasn't at the state that he would need Tommy John surgery to be able to pitch again. He is now 39 years old so he might not choose that option.

He was really hoping to be a part of another strong Royals team again this season and he had hopes of helping the team earn another state berth.

"I don't know if there is anything I would have done differently," he said. "I gave myself enough recovery time last year. I think it's the fact that I'm not 20 and closing in on 40 that makes it a little harder to recover."

The Royals are off to a strong start this season. Meyer still believes the team has a chance to have a banner campaign, but a year ago they lost in section play and missed on earning a state berth.

"I think they're going to do really well, probably without me, with (pitchers) Gabe Pilla and Matteo (Finocchi) and the whole roster," he said. "They have a good crew and they're going to kick some butt in (Section) 1B. And if I'm not there on the bench, I'll be there in the stands supporting them."

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Spring Grove senior Elijah Solum has chosen basketball. Solum was being recruited by both basketball and football coaches to play in college. He signed a letter of intent to play basketball at Gustavus Adolphus College this past Friday.

As a junior, Solum quarterbacked Spring Grove to a state runner-up finish in Class Nine-Player football in the fall of 2022. He then helped the Lions place third in the state in the Class 1A boys basketball state tournament in March of 2023.

While playing AAU basketball, he suffered an ACL injury in the spring of 2023 and missed his entire senior season of football in the fall of 2023.

The 6-foot-1 guard returned and played the majority of his senior season in basketball in 2023-24, but was not 100 percent. In 17 games as a senior, he averaged 13.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.5 steals per game. He finished with 1,448 career points.

Guy N. Limbeck is a sports writer for the Post Bulletin. His Local Notebook appears each Tuesday. He can be reached at glimbeck@postbulletin.com .