The secret behind Bartolo Colon’s success: stem cells.

Soriano day-to-day after MRI shows inflammation
Game 34: Vinny from Jersey

Bartolo Colon‘s resurgence has been the comeback story of the year so far, by a considerable margin too, and this article in De Diario Libre explains the medical procedure that made it possible. Dominican doctors Sergio Guzman, Leonel Liriano, and Hector Rosario approached the right-hander in 2009 about the stem cell treatment for his ailing shoulder, which included damage to the rotator cuff, ligaments, and tendons. It was performed in addition to the more well-known platelet-rich plasma treatment (PRP), and neither procedure took more than 40 minutes or required any kind of surgery (and subsequent recovery time). And here he is, throwing mid-90’s gas.

“We have not invented anything, nor have we done anything new,” said Guzman. “This is being done the world over. We received some training overseas to handle this type of things. Harvard University donated the centrifuges. This is no invention. What we do is take a little bit of bone marrow and we put it into an affected area”. I recommend reading the whole article, very interesting stuff.

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Soriano day-to-day after MRI shows inflammation
Game 34: Vinny from Jersey
  • http://www.twitter.com/ngoral Jake LaMotta’s Left Hook

    Stem Cell research is the new frontier in sports medicine in my opinion. I know it’s been going on for years, but I think Colon’s case if the first time i’ve heard it connected to professional sports, unless it was used for one of the paralyzed NFL players a while back.

  • Thomas

    Very interesting and very cool. Hopefully, Bartolo continues to pitch well and this technique helps future injured individuals get better.

  • Dr. O

    good thing it didn’t push his velocity back into the high 90’s, The Yankees would have been obligated by baseball law to only use him out of the bullpen.

  • Light

    The Yankees need to invest in this technology so they can grow a new Jeter, and eventually A-Rod.

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

      We’ve already implanted some of Jeter’s stem cells into Cito Culver.

      #twostepsaheadofyou

      • Mister Delaware

        # yetonesteplategettingtothatballupthemiddle

  • Gonzo

    I think every Yankee needs to get this done before Bud tries to outlaw it. At least they can all drive drunk though.

    • Adam B

      Phil Hughes was the first guy I thought of…

      • Gonzo

        Is Kevin Millwood listening?

  • KeithK

    I am picturing Big Bartolo sucking the life out of fetuses before every start (like Christopher Reeve in South Park).

    • Pat D

      One of the few times I was disgusted by South Park.

  • JPB

    I’m an MD…and I studied this stuff when the story on Tiger Woods and PRP came out. PRP is complete quackery, snake oil.

    I suspect the stem cell stuff is, too. There is alot of good, legitimate stuff going on in stem cell research, but there are alot more quacks. It isn’t very difficult to come up with a concoction that has stem cells in it, and inject it into someone. Doesn’t mean there’s any science behind it, or that it works.

    This kind of stuff goes on with elite athletes all the time, because there’s money in it. Maybe I should open a stem cell lab…..

    • aluis

      Or maybe you should try FACTS instead of your just opinion i.e., “is complete quackery”

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

        Yeah, that sounded harsh.

        PRP hasn’t been subjected to rigorous, long-term control-group testing, so we can’t confirm that successful cases of athletes rehabbing more effectively through PRP is directly attributable to the PRP and not some confounding factor or a placebo effect.

        To call it “quackery”, though, that’s an overstatement. Reputable medical professionals (who are not quacks or charlatans) are recommending and treating people with PRP because it has been positively correlated with beneficial effects (and has yet to show any adverse affects) and the treatment concept comes from a theoretically sound scientific hypothesis.

        We don’t have time-tested proof of it’s causal effects, but it’s far from quackery or even pseudo-science. Quackery implies that fraud artists are knowingly giving patients false treatments that have been proven to be worthless.

        PRP hasn’t been proven to be worthwhile, but that isn’t the same thing as saying it’s been proven to be worthless.

        • Gonzo

          He might be saying that there are tons of Quacks that engage in PRP and Stem Cell treatments. I am not sure though.

          There are a ton of quacks that engage in these procedures though. It’s sad because they prey on the sick and hopeful.

    • fire levine

      Reading this comment all I could think is this must be what the msm thinks of sabermetrics

  • Ari G

    wow sucks for the rangers

  • Jorge

    In Bartolo’s case, stem cells are even better topped with mojo sauce and a side of tostones.

    • Gonzo

      Nice!

  • Lou

    My friend Barry Zipperneck received a stem cell shot in his hip after a hip replacement 3 years ago. Before it, he could hardly walk because he was crippled with osteoporosis.

    Last month he ran a 4.4 40yd dash.

    Im considering getting some shots myself but this guy in NY charges 5K for a serious of 3 shots. My friend Barry did 2 cycles (10k).

    Here is a video of my friends recent running experience:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUVFZYYzHPU

    • jim p

      $5K is very serious indeed. Is that $5K for all three, or for each of the three, for a total $15K?

  • S

    Is anyone thinking what I’m thinking? Hughes, Joba, Prior to the stem cell treatment!!!

  • BklynJT

    Stem cells FTW.

    BTW, how many games have the Yankee’s bullpen blown this year, post the 7th inning?