Results tagged ‘ Scott Sheridan ’

Utley to DL, Ryno Surprised

Ryne Sandberg, Chase UtleyChase Utley is down.

The team announced late Tuesday night it has placed him on the 15-day disabled list with inflammation in his right ankle. It is the same ankle that Utley badly sprained in January during offseason workouts, and the same ankle the forced him to miss the beginning of Spring Training.

“It’s hard to tell,” Utley said, asked how much the ankle has affected him at the plate. “Obviously, it’s been bothering me for a little while. Most players have aches and pains through the year. So I’m not shocked with that. It’s really showing no improvement. So I think it’s a good time to get it right. We will have a cortisone shot tomorrow. We’ll take a little time off and hopefully, that will get it squared away.”

Utley is hitting .179 (39-for-218) with seven doubles, one triple, four home runs, 25 RBIs and a .532 OPS in 65 games. His batting average and OPS are last among 163 qualified hitters in baseball.

The Phillies almost certainly do not mind Utley’s trip to the DL because he has a $15 million club option for 2016 that automatically vests if he reaches 500 plate appearances. He has 249 through the team’s first 73 games. Depending on how much time he misses and how well Cesar Hernandez plays as his replacement, the option could no longer be an issue upon his return.

“Talking to the doctor today, the more time I can lay off it the better chance it has to heal properly,” Utley said. “I don’t have an exact time frame. It will be at least 15 days.”

Utley said his knees, which have been an issue in the past, are healthy.

Ryne Sandberg said he was surprised by the news because he said Utley told him he had been fine.

“My communication with Chase throughout this season about playing is that he’s been up and willing to go and no really reports of anything holding him back,” Sandberg said. “I was a little bit surprised by it in some regards.

“I don’t know if it’s affected him, but to get it taken care of with a stint on the DL is the next step to see if that helps him get that behind him. But the way that he’s moved around and run the bases and run hard and played defense, I don’t think it was holding him back all that much, in my opinion. But to have it bothering now, as he said it has kind of crept up on him to the point of getting it rechecked and re-evalutated. That’s what he feels.”

Sandberg’s comment that he was unaware of any issues with Utley’s ankle is interesting because the Phillies said Utley had a MRI on May 16, which showed some inflammation and swelling.

“It was present on the bone itself,” Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan said. “Most of the ligaments on the outside are healing pretty well. The ligament on the inside still had some healing to still go. He has some symptoms that we want to take care of. So we’ll place him on the DL and try to get him healthy.”

Howard’s Achilles and Knee Issues Related?

Ryan HowardRyan Howard missed much of last season following surgery to repair a ruptured left Achilles.

He then had a cortisone injection in his left knee yesterday in Philadelphia because of inflammation and changes in his meniscus. He is unavailable to play tonight against the Marlins, but the Phillies said he is day-to-day. They are hopeful he can avoid a trip to the disabled list. They also hope this is not the beginning of a trend of leg injuries for the $125 million first baseman, who has $85 million remaining on his contract following this season.

“Injuries are a part of the game,” assistant general manager Scott Proefrock said. “That comes with the territory when you sign these guys. We have a bunch of pitchers on long-term contracts, too. It’s just a risk you take. You never know what’s going to happen. Chase (Utley) signed a seven-year deal and we lost out.”

Howard had an MRI exam this morning in Philadelphia before joining the Phillies in Miami. Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan said Howard had symptoms in his knee for a couple weeks, but it was manageable. Recently, however, Howard told Sheridan the knee bothered him more.

Could the Achilles injury he suffered in Game 5 of the 2011 National League Division Series be related to the knee injury? It is common for pitchers to develop elbow issues because of shoulder and back issues. As a pitcher’s mechanics get out of whack, it causes stress on other parts of the body.


Utley Update (Kind Of)

Thumbnail image for utley reporters 2.jpg

The Phillies said this morning Chase Utley has made a small improvement in his rehab.

Is this good news?

“These are kind of baby steps,” Ruben Amaro Jr. cautioned. “I can’t sit here and say this is a giant step forward or he’s going to be ready for Opening Day or anything like that. We’re comfortable with the path. It may take a while. We’ll see if he continues to show progression. Hopefully he will.”

Utley is sidelined indefinitely with patellar tendinitis, chondromalacia and bone inflammation in his right knee. The Phillies have consulted several doctors outside the organization, and Amaro said the Phillies are comfortable with the treatments and progressions Utley is making in Spring Training.

Amaro said Utley has been able to do more exercises than he had in the recent past.


No Word on Utley

The silence is deafening.

Chase Utley received a cortisone injection into his right knee Friday for his patellar tendinitis. So far the Phillies and Utley have said nothing about the shot’s effectiveness — still hoping for an update later today — although the Phillies initially said they should know something before the end of last weekend. They adjusted that timetable Sunday, when they said they should know something by Monday or Tuesday.

So how much has the shot helped?

“I’ve got nothing new for you guys,” Utley said as he walked off the field following batting practice this morning at Bright House Field. “When I do, I’ll let you know.”

Ruben Amaro Jr. was unavailable to comment in the morning. Head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan provided an update on Domonic Brown‘s hand surgery, but did not field questions on Utley’s knee.

Utley took batting practice as normal today, but remains unable to run or take fielding practice. He has missed the team’s first 12 Grapefruit League games, and there are no indications he is close to playing anytime soon.

As soon as I hear something on Utley’s condition I will let you know.


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Brown Has Successful Surgery

Domonic Brown had surgery on the fractured hook of the hamate bone in his right hand this morning.

Here is the latest from Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan:

  • Hand specialist Randall Culp performend the surgery in Philadelphia.
  • Culp removed the hamate.
  • Stitches are removed in 10 days.
  • Brown will be in a removable splint three to four weeks.
  • Sheridan said, “Normal return on a hamate excision is about four to six weeks. That return means back to playing full out in four to six weeks. The biggest issue he’s facing is how sensitive is the scar and how does he tolerate those kinds of progressions.”
  • Sheridan said when Brown returns to camp tomorrow he can return to cardio workouts immediately. After the stitches are removed, Brown can begin his progressions toward hitting. He said Brown will have to do “scar management” things to desensitize the area. “He really can’t begin hitting or anything towards that until probably about at least two weeks.”

A Phillies spokesman said Sheridan only would answer questions about Brown today, so he offered no update on Chase Utley. Utley is in camp today and took batting practice as normal.

Update: The Phillies scratched Ben Francisco from today’s lineup because of a sore neck. Francisco said it wasn’t serious.


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Madson to Miss Minimum Eight Weeks

The Phillies said Ryan Madson had successful surgery on his right big toe this morning at the Rothman Institute at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital.

But successful surgery does not mean Madson will be back quickly. Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan said Madson will need a minimum of eight weeks to recover, which means he will not be back until July at the earliest. Obviously, that is a considerable blow to the bullpen, which is struggling.

Madson will see foot and ankle specialist Steve Raikin, who performed the surgery, in two weeks for an evaluation. Madson will have the pins in his toe removed in four weeks. He will be non-weight bearing for two weeks.


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Madson to Have Toe Surgery

Ryan Madson‘s big toe has become a big problem.

Madson, who broke his right big toe after he kicked a chair in frustration Wednesday in San Francisco, had a CT scan this morning at the Rothman Institute. Foot and ankle specialist Steven Raikin will insert a pin into Madson’s toe on Tuesday.

The Phillies said they will update Madson’s timetable to return following surgery.

“We knew it was bad from the beginning,” head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan said. “It is what it is. It’s not just like it’s a little crack. It’s got a couple pieces to it. The question is whether you leave it the way it is, or whether you pin it to help the healing process. It’s Dr. Raikin’s impression that the best way to handle this is go in and try to pin it, make it a more stable fracture and certainly hopefully help the healing process.”

Broken toes for pitchers seem to take at least a month to heal. It is unknown if the breaks are similar, but former Pirates left-hander Oliver Perez broke his left big toe on June 26, 2005, after kicking a metal laundry cart in the visitors’ clubhouse in St. Louis. He did not pitch again for Pittsburgh until Sept. 9, a span of 66 games. Cubs right-hander Ryan Dempster broke his right big toe during a celebration last July. He spent 26 days on the disabled list between starts.


An an aside, whenever I hear “big toe” I always think about Sgt. Hulka in Stripes.


The Zo Zone is on Facebook and Twitter. His Phillies book “The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly” is available online, and at Delaware Valley bookstores!

Hamels Is OK, Expected to Pitch Tuesday

Asked how he felt today, Cole Hamels declined comment.

Uh oh?

Not really. The Phillies said Hamels, who left yesterday’s game against the Brewers in the fourth inning after a line drive off Prince Fielder‘s bat hit in him in the left shoulder, is fine and is “not in jeopardy” of missing his next start Tuesday against Washington.

Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan examined Hamels today and reported no problems. Hamels was scheduled to long toss before tonight’s game and throw a bullpen session before tomorrow night’s game.

“We’ll see how he long tosses today,” Phillies pitching coach Rich Dubee said. “If he needs another day, he throw Sunday. I expect he’ll be alright to throw tomorrow the way he sounds.”


Charlie Manuel also said catcher Carlos Ruiz, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right oblique, could rejoin the team Wednesday against Washington. Ruiz is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment Saturday as a designated hitter for Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Ruiz is scheduled to catch Sunday, DH on Monday and catch again Tuesday before potentially rejoining the team.


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Relatively Good News on Hamels

colehamels.jpgCole Hamels has no structural damage to his left elbow.

That is good news.

But his chances of pitching Opening Day on April 5 remain very much up in the air.

Hamels had a MRI and dynamic ultrasound today in Philadelphia. Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said there is some inflammation in the posterior lateral aspect of his elbow joint. Hamels received an anti-inflammatory injection and will not throw for two days. That means he will begin throwing again Thursday.

“You want him to be up there and pitching,” Amaro said. “Obviously, that’ll be the tell tale sign that Cole is back and pitching. But overall this is pretty good news. Until he’s up on the mound, pitching and competing, then we’ll know that Cole is pitching like Cole can. But overall we’re pretty pleased with the way things have worked out.

“This is pretty much the scenario we thought going into this. It is relatively good news. Anytime you have to have some type of procedure there is some concern.”

And Opening Day?

“We’ll start when he’s ready to start,” Amaro said. “He’ll start for the Phillies at the major league level when he’s ready to start. If it’s Opening Day, it’s Opening Day. If it’s some time beyond that then that’s when it will be. He’ll let us know what the pace is. We’ll monitor his progress. It’ll depend on how he continues to progress. For us, again, it’s the same old mantra: It’s not about Opening Day. It’s about 162 games, and hopefully beyond 162 games that we really have to worry about.”

Given the history with his elbow and where he is in his throwing program, is Opening Day even realistic?

“Certainly we have our concerns,” Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan said. “But I agree with Ruben. Our biggest thing is that it’s a long season. We need him for the majority of it. We’re really not that worried about Opening Day. We’ve got to have him for the whole season. Not just one day. Obviously, we’re not happy with the fact that his elbow hurts, but we’re trying to get him better.”

Hamels missed most of the 2004 season with Single-A Clearwater with elbow problems. Hamels pushed himself hard in a memorable spring training, but missed the first month of the season. He returned to make four starts, but missed the rest of the season when the problem returned.

“A similar condition, but that was a lot more significant,” Sheridan said. “He was much more tender and a lot less productive at that time than he is now. He was not able to throw at that point in time.”

So the fact that Hamels is scheduled to resume throwing Thursday is somewhat encouraging.

“He was actually progressing,” Amaro said. “His arm speed. He thought he was getting stronger every time out. He wasn’t going the other way. It wasn’t like he was deteriorating. He was still increasing his strength, but he still had persistent tightness.”


Charlie Manuel is not attending today’s game for personal matters. Manuel missed Saturday’s game for similar reasons.