A-Rod will have surgery next week, likely out until All-Star break


During a conference call with reporters, Dr. Bryan Kelly announced that Alex Rodriguez will have surgery to repair his left hip next Wednesday. He expects A-Rod to be out until the All-Star break, but he also admitted they won’t know the extent of the cartilage damage until they actually cut him open. That could push his return date back even further.

I highly recommend Joel Sherman’s article about the procedure, in which Kelly spoke at length about the condition of A-Rod’s hip and its potential impact on his performance, as well as expectations going forward. He also explained why the injury was not diagnosed sooner. There’s an awful lot of information in there about a situation we outsiders don’t really know much about, so make sure you check it out to get a better understanding of what exactly is going on.

Categories : Asides, Injuries
  • turd surfer

    I was told by commentors on this site that he might by only out for one month. Any opinion other than that would be subject to merciless ridicule.

    • Andy Pettitte’s Fibula

      I heard Arod is like Wolverine and he’ll be ready to play about 30 minutes after the surgery is over.

      • MannyGeee

        I heard from Bartolo Colon and Kobe Bryant that some German-spec stem cell should shake that hip problem out in about a week.

    • Havok9120

      A) that’s really not what he was saying at the start of that argument, though it wouldn’t surprise me if it had become that by the end of it.

      B) you gave that same merciless ridicule back to him at the time and apparently wish to try and do so again, so what’s your point here?

      • turd surfer

        A) Yes, he said he might only be out one month and ridiculed people who had opinions that differed.

        B) I guess it’s the simple things in life that make me happy.

        • Havok9120

          And then people wonder why Ted is rude to you “without provocation.”


          • turd surfer

            Reap what you sow. Maybe he shouldn’t paint people with a broad brush. I know why he rude to me now at least. I earned it. Hopefully he will not be so rude to other people though. I guess you’ll just say they “deserved” it. Probably because of my actions which is hilarious.

            • turd surfer

              You can prove me wrong if you defend someone from him when he is being a jerk.

              Unless you only defend him…

              • Havok9120

                Oh stop. I disagree with him plenty and his habit of letting the argument get personal with people he doesn’t know is both counterproductive toward getting his point across and simply rude. And I’ve pointed this out to him many times. I read only the beginning of that argument and have no idea what your part in it was. I’ve learned to ignore him once he and his adversary get rolling, despite the respect I have for his statistical knowledge and willingness to look something up when he doesn’t know it.

                But you provoking him here is just as bad as his mocking you and to pretend otherwise is naive at best. You want civil discussion? Be civil, even when provoked…and don’t poke the bear for the Hell of it. I never said you “deserved” it, and I admitted to begin with that he likely escalated his argument to nonsensical proportions by the end of the fight. Projecting motives on me without cause doesn’t help anything. What, you think I’m on Ted’s payroll? :P

                Anyway, bed time. Ambein is a wonderful drug. Please don’t take this personally. I didn’t mean for it to be and I’m sorry if I gave that impression. Have a good evening.

                • Ted Nelson

                  The guy’s handle is “turd surfer.” he’s a troll. One of those ones where they troll and then get all offended when you treat them like a troll.

    • JMK

      We could have a high-minded discussion on the impact on the roster, potential moves the front office would have to make given the projection, or even how to utilize A-Rod when he returns…but I think we’d all rather carry over some really stupid conversation and internet grudge you held in a past thread with another commenter. So thanks for getting the ball rolling.

  • yankees insider

    My sources tell me that there is a three team deal happening right now involving RH OF vernon wells, RH 3B alex rodriguez, and RH OF giancarlo stanton

    • MannyGeee

      The “deal” happens to be in an underground poker game… The game is Omaha.

  • http://www.twitter.com/thewallbreakers Scully

    All jokes aside that was a great, insightful article.

    • RetroRob


      Not that most fans will actually read it.

    • Dale Mohorcic

      Completely agree. I came to the comments to write that same thing but you beat me to the punch. The quotes from the doctor had information and informed opinion that really shed light on what is wrong and how it affected his ability to play.

    • Havok9120

      Yeah, it was a great read. It’ll help a lot for us armchair GMs trying to game out the season.

      • Mike HC

        haha … I can finally decide on whether to pull the trigger on that Morse deal!

  • Cris Pengiucci

    I’m torn upon hearing this news. Yes, a healthy A-Rod will help the Yankees. However, a healthy 37 year old A-Rod is still a 37 year old A-Rod. If he comes back healthy, how much longer can we expect him to be productive? If it appeared surgery wouldn’t have helped him, he would have been forced to retire. I don’t know which option I prefer.

  • BigLoving

    If Arod has an Alert Belle like end to his career how does that influence the $189?

    • RetroRob

      It hurts…a lot. The Yankees will still be assessed his $27.5M AAV against the luxury tax, plus they’d have to go out and replace him.

  • trr

    Arod will never play again

    • DC

      Adding physician to your area of expertise?

      • trr

        u heard it here first

        • Get Phelps Up

          Perhaps you should add grammar to your areas of expertise.

    • Havok9120

      A lot of guys have said this and I really don’t see it. I think if there’s any possible way he could play again (and after reading the article, there clearly is) he’ll take it and make the most of it. He’s too physically gifted and too in love with the game to do anything else.

      Whether he’ll ever play at a high level again is a different matter, but I’m pretty sure he’ll do that too.

  • LazzeriScooter

    Perhaps, I’m slightly dim or blind, where does the article state Alex’s left hip problem was too clandestine to diagnose prior to his spectacular postseason failure?

    Was there no medical procedure that could have revealed this problem earlier giving Alex or the team the vital opportunity to fix this problem before it ruined not only the 2012 season but, now this upcoming one?

    • Havok9120

      Kelly said understanding of hip injuries is still in its relative infancy — similar to where ACL knowledge was in the late-1970s — and because these injuries are “insidious,” coming over long periods of wear and tear without a traumatic separation or break, they are often easily undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.

      In A-Rod’s case, Rodriguez was describing a lack of explosiveness rather than pain. The discomfort in other body parts came because he was putting a greater strain on those to compensate for the weakened left hip.

      “I have done over 3,000 surgeries,” Kelly said, “and I have seen some [X-rays] where I say, ‘I’m not certain why [the patient] is having so much pain.’ I see others and say, ‘How were you able to play at all with a hip like this?’ His was more at that end of the spectrum.”


      That ARod may have been lying through his teeth to avoid being put on the DL certainly didn’t help matters. If the symptoms are being reported incorrectly AND the study of such injuries is only just making progress, I’m not sure what else we should have expected.

      Some of this will probably boil down to the same “dye contrast MRI vs basic MRI” argument from the Spring regarding the delay in diagnosing Pineda. You don’t do the all out (and invasive) diagnostic procedure when the original procedure tells you nothing is wrong. Nor can you justify overriding the patient’s wishes when they’re reporting the wrong symptoms to you in the first place.

  • Herby

    I can see it being possible coming back to somewhat of his old levels of play, having a more normalized hip structure will certainly help in getting his swing back to where it was. A lot depends on how his body heals as far as the labrum and muscles around it are concerned. There is the possibility he’ll never be on the field again, but I kind of expect judging on the work he does, you’ll see more of his old self rather than his, “old,” self.

    • Herby

      I know from personal experience going from one doctor to another talking about different types of hip surgeries that I’m amazed at the difference in how my muscles in my back and legs have responded in just the last 14 weeks, although I didn’t have what he’s doing, something like it was considered at one time, and finally opted for the full replacement. Of course I’m not an athlete expected to deliver on his level, but I wasn’t starting out on his level either.

  • RC aka oldmanalex

    At first I was worried that this physician may have been “persuaded” to have been what I thought, was quite optimistic in ARODS prognosis. Maybe even to raise his value/give hope to the fanbase etc. But, the article did state he works for the Giants and other teams. So I would assume he wouldn’t put his academic career on the line just for the sake of persuasion by the yankees/arod. Being in medicine, I must say I loved the article as it described how the movement of the hip potentially plays into a swing. Anyways, I feel optimistic maybe this guy can come back and hit .280/25hr/100rbi right?? right?

    • RetroRob

      Persuaded? What do you mean? These doctors are not going to go and lie to a newspaper because the Yankees asked them to do it. That’s not why you go to a place like the Hospital for Special Surgery.

      BTW If you ever have any type of issue with arms, hips, legs, joints and overall orthopaedics, do what you can to find a doctor here. Period. I know two people (non-athletes, just regular people) who had surgery here. One was told by three separate physicians that there was nothing that could be done about the pain in his elbow. He was in agony. Could barely lift his arm. He found a doctor at the Hospital for Special Surgery who said there was 99% chance he could fix his problem. His insurance refused, told him he had to live in pain and they wouldn’t cover the procedure. He paid for it out of pocket. He’s 100% recovered and pain free several years later. Nearly bankrupted himself. Said it was worth every dime.

  • RC aka oldmanalex

    At first I was worried that this physician may have been “persuaded” to have been what I thought, was quite optimistic in ARODS prognosis. Maybe even to raise his value/give hope to the fanbase etc. But, the article did state he works for the Giants and other teams. So I would assume he wouldn’t put his academic career on the line just for the sake of persuasion by the yankees/arod. Being in medicine, I must say I loved the article as it described how the movement of the hip potentially plays into a swing. Anyways, I feel optimistic maybe this guy can come back and hit .280/25hr/100rbi right?? right?

  • mt

    There is so much uncertainty here – the damage they will find when they open up the hip,, whether his rehab will negatively affect his other surgically repired hip, the impact of steroids moving forward on his recovery and his decline in general (even though doctor dismisses it as cause of his current hip damage, I still don’t think this can be completely dismisssed as a non-factor going forward) and his advanced (baseball) age. In addition there is generally more uncertainty surrounding hips than, say, knees.

    We need to assume Rodriguez does not come back at all this year in making sure we have another bat whether it is Mike Morse or not. My fear is that the offensively challenged Mariners will top us on any Morse offer – they do not need every one of their high end minor league pitchers (we need Phelps and Nova for the $189 millio plan and Mariners in general have more highly regaded pitching prospects than we do) – I listened to MASN down here and they actually felt young pitching would be actually more attractive to Nats in any trade than the lefthander part of the trade. I wonder if we also take Suzuki off their hands (as long as we prevent Suzuki from reaching his 2014 option) would that tip the scales in our favor.

    • blake

      I think the Rays are a bigger threat than the Mariners….the Mariners aren’t ready to content so what good does adding another DH type bat for a year do for them? They already traded for Morales…..can’t see them giving up any of their top pitchers to add Morse for one year……

      The Rays have an opening at 1B so they are a fit…..

  • Mike Spags

    I think you could look at this as a positive. The article said that you need a 25 percent rotation in your hip, and A-Rod didn’t even have that in his best years. If the surgery fixes that rotation, maybe he can be productive again. Maybe even longer into his career.

  • blake

    We can only hope that the cartilage damage isn’t too severe when they open him up…..

  • blake

    If Mark Phillipon knows that hip injuries tend to affect the other hip eventually by compensation…..and they knew there was a developmental abnormality with the femur head…..then why wasn’t the left hip check and monitored over the last 4 years as well? Maybe it was…

  • emac2

    I think it’s safe to say we have our long term solution at DH unless they decide to turn him in Eric Chavez by putting him in the field whenever he feels good enough.

    …no, I don’t mean left handed…

  • Sleepy Brandon

    Well that’s definitely longer than I expected. Looks like we’re going to see lots of Youk and lots of Nix. Think we’ll push for Morse a bit more now?