Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Phillies injury drama with Ryan Howard

The Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard missed a lot of last season after he was plagued by a ruptured Achilles that required surgery to fix. Now his left knee is giving him problems and he was kept out of the line-up for the series finale against the Nationals last week. Howard received a cortisone injection to the knee to try and decrease the inflammation but he was unavailable to play against the Marlins and his knee seems to still be bothering him.

Phillies team and coaches are hoping that Howard will avoid being struck off the roster for the season and that he can make a comeback from the injury in a short period of time. Howard had an MRI that revealed cartilage tears and inflammation and recently Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan expressed worry that his knee injury could be related to the Achilles injury he suffered previously.

It’s very common for pitchers to develop elbow issues related to back and shoulder injuries as the body starts to compensate for parts that are weaker, and Sheridan wonders if this isn’t the case in reverse with Howard.

Howard has been ordered to rest and can spend his days relaxing whilst entertaining himself by playing top online casino games at www.handycasino.de or watching TV. Anything that keeps the weight off his knee is encouraged and it’s hoped he will soon be on the mend. A trend of leg injuries and downtime for Howard could cost the Phillies greatly, not only in game results but in financial terms. The baseman has $85 million remaining on his $125 million contract but assistant general manager Scott Proefrock seems to take the matter in his stride. He says it comes with the territory and risks are all part of the game, as you never know what’s going to happen next.

Right now Sheridan’s main aim is to get Howard healthy again as he was hitting .245 and had 6 home runs and 22RBIs in 41 games this season. He also has a .713 on base plus slugging percentage which is the lowest mark of his career and his OPS have declined every season since 2009. When faced with the prospect of spending the next 3 or 4 months on one healthy knee Howard seemed to accept the diagnosis, but is keen to get back in the game.  

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