Top 10 Candidates for 2016 Comeback Player of the Year

Source: Bob Levey/Getty Images North America

Source: Bob Levey/Getty Images North America

#1- Yu Darvish

The Texas Rangers ace underwent Tommy John surgery last May after attempting to pitch through elbow issues. He is scheduled to be ready around May of 2016 and has been training very hard to do so. The Japanese import is a strikeout pitcher and you have to wonder if the wear and tear of pitching every fifth day in the major leagues has taken its toll on the right-handed pitcher.

He has struck out 680 batters in his 545 major league innings. With all those strikeouts, he naturally has high pitch counts every time he pitches. His 11.2 career K percentage is very impressive, but perhaps he will want to pitch more to contact in order to preserve his arm.

At the age of 28, Darvish should be able to bounce back and he is likely to have a great year. He tops this list because he has the pedigree to recover ahead of time and fall right back into his old routine. The Rangers now have Cole Hamels on the roster and he can help carry the load that used to fall exclusively on Darvish.

The combination of the two pitchers is about as solid a one-two punch in the whole league. If Darvish can return to form, he will be a likely bet to be among the league leaders in strikeouts and wins. He has a player option for the 2017 season so he will need a great 2016 season to trigger some options in which he could become a free agent. The right-handed pitcher has plenty of incentive to have a great year.

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