- Sang Ho Baek of George Mason University passed away at the age of 20 as a result of complications from Tommy John surgery.
- Baek was a freshman pitcher on the team after playing four years on the varsity baseball team at James M. Bennett High School in Maryland.
- More weird news here.
College baseball pitcher Sang Ho Baek of George Mason University has died at the age of 20 as a result of complications from Tommy John surgery. Baek was a freshman on the 2021 George Mason Baseball team.
“We are devastated by the passing of Sang,” said George Mason baseball head coach Bill Brown in a press release. “Sang was an incredible teammate who was loved by everyone associated with Mason baseball. He will be missed and forever cherished in our hearts. Right now, our thoughts are with Sang’s family at this unbearably difficult time.”
Dear college baseball family,
We lost a brother on Saturday.
Sang Ho Baek, 20, baseball player at @MasonBaseball, lost his life from a blood clot after receiving Tommy John surgery. Truly heartbreaking… RIP 💚
— 11Point7: The College Baseball Podcast 🎙 (@11point7) June 17, 2021
“After being informed by his family about Sang’s passing, we are heartbroken and extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends,” said George Mason Assistant Vice President/Director of Athletic Brad Edwards. “Sang embodied everything you would want from a student-athlete. He was an excellent student, dedicated teammate and friend to so many. We are committed to providing support and resources to Sang’s teammates and all those in the Mason family who loved him.”
Baek’s teammate Scott Morgan has set up a GoFundMe in an attempt to raise $15,000 for the pitcher’s family.
“Sang was a member of the 2021 George Mason Baseball team,” reads the GoFundMe statement. “After battling through injuries throughout the season, Sang required Tommy John surgery. He suddenly passed away due to complications with his surgery. As a team, we are all mourning his passing. We are asking for donations in order to support Sang’s family through this difficult time. Any and all donations are appreciated, and the Baek family will receive all of the proceeds.”
The George Mason Baseball Team kindly asks for any and all contributions that you can make for the Baek family. Sang is missed dearly, and we want to help his family as much as possible https://t.co/kAndO9YuWk
— Scotty Morgan (@scottyboimorgan) June 17, 2021
TMZ Sports reports Baek suffered a blood clot while recovering from the surgery.
Baek was a right-handed pitcher on the James M. Bennett High School baseball team that won the 2019 3A Maryland State Championship.
According to the National Institute of Health (via Ortho Bethesda), “patient selection and previous operations could impact complications, and complication rates for the surgery generally range from 8.8 to 40%.”
Complications of Tommy John surgery may include side effects of anesthesia, the risk of infection, damage to their nerves and blood vessels, paresthesias, swelling, tingling, weakness, numbness, and stiffness, but rarely (if ever, until now) do they result in death.
Through 2020, a reported 1,941 Tommy John surgeries have been performed on players from all levels of baseball including high school, college, and professional.