Contreras’ Season Is Over

It looked like a season-ending injury the moment Jose Contreras dropped to the turf in pain in the seventh inning last night at Citizens Bank Park.

It turned out to be just that.

Contreras had a MRI exam this morning and the Phillies said results showed he completely tore the UCL and flexor pronator tendon in his right elbow, ending his season. It is a big blow to a bullpen that had just started pitching better after struggling the first six weeks of the season. Contreras, who said he felt completely healthy before that one fateful pitch, was 1-0 with a 5.27 ERA in 17 appearances, but had a 1.86 ERA in his last 11 appearances before injuring himself Friday.

“I’m very, very disappointed,” Contreras said through his translator, Phillies third base coach Juan Samuel. “Going back to last year, it was in April (when I got hurt), I tried to come back, made some attempts, I worked really hard after surgery (in September). I worked hard in Spring Training. Even though I felt when I came back that I wasn’t where I needed to be, I worked hard and my command was there in the last four, five outings. To have this happen again, it’s very disappointing.”

Contreras, 40, had flexor pronator surgery in September. The Phillies said they will get a second opinion from orthopedist Lewis Yocum, who performed the surgery.

Contreras said he plans to have surgery and will try to pitch again, although he knows the odds are stacked against him.

“It’s difficult having a second surgery, but I’ll see after the surgery,” he said. “It’s going to be hard but I’ll give it a shot.”

“I feel badly for him,” Ruben Amaro Jr. said. “He worked pretty hard to get back to the point where he started to be pretty effective. It’s a tough piece of news to take.”

The injury leaves Jonathan Papelbon, Antonio Bastardo, Chad Qualls, Jake Diekman, Joe Savery, Raul Valdes and Michael Schwimer — who the Phillies recalled to take Contreras’ place — in the bullpen. The Phillies have relievers Mike Stutes, David Herndon and Justin De Fratus on the DL, leaving them very thin.

Contreras had started to work himself into the setup role, but that might fall to Bastardo now.

“Bastardo’s been doing fine,” Amaro said.

But Charlie Manuel last night expressed his concerns about the team’s bullpen depth.

“We need some bullpen pieces,” he said. “We need some. We needed some when the game started tonight. And now we need more.”

5 Comments

What hurts Contreras is that funky arm motion from the stretch. He’s almost a side-armer there and it really kills the elbow

Yeah, it really “killed” a 10-year career. The guy is 40 years old.

I mean this year. Once the elbow is injured it’s hard to recover from it when you’re torquing it.

Pingback: Contreras to Give Comeback A Shot « TTB

John: The guy is 40 years old.

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