Obviously Arroyo's performance is going to have a big impact on the starting rotation, and I was wondering how much improvement from last year we might expect based on his recovery from mono. To that end, I went looking for other MLB players who have had had mononucleosis:
In 2006, Casey Kotchman had a .196 wOBA before landing on the DL and missing much of the season with mono. In 2007, he rebounded with a solid .296/.372/.467 line.
In 2010, Jew Lowrie missed the first three months of the season with mono, but returned to put up a .393 wOBA when he was activated from the DL.
In 2011, Brandon Inge returned from a DL stint with mono near the end of June, and put up wOBAs of .108, .256, and .382 respectively for the next three months.
Recoveries like those give me a bit of hope for Bronson this year, although there are clearly some caveats: First, this is just anecdotal evidence, and probably doesn't have much predictive value overall. Second, all three of those guys were position players, so their recovery process might be fairly different than a pitcher's.
I also note that all three players above actually spent time on the DL as part of their recovery. Bronson, on the other hand, pitched through his recovery during spring training last year. As this
article points out, that was very likely an unnecessary risk that inhibited his recovery, and might explain why his ineffectiveness seemed to last throughout the season, even after he was no longer ill. With that in mind, hopefully an entire off season of basically mandated abstinence from pitching in game situations will give him the chance to truly recover his form.