The approach of Spring can only mean one thing in New York City – baseball season. The beginning of April brings the season home opener of both the Yankees and the Mets, two of our finest, home-grown sports teams.
As sports injuries go, Major League Baseball is at lower end of the risk spectrum out of the big four, but it is by no means injury-free. From home plate collisions to fractured skulls to even the odd foul ball in the groin, there has been some fairly dramatic damage done on the diamond. However, the most common injuries seen tend to be a little less theatrical – such as tendonitis or ligament and rotator cuff tears.
Normally, baseball injuries can be avoided by doing simple things such as warming up properly and not pitching on consecutive days or playing all year round, but if you are a pro player, some of these are impossible to avoid. So this month, we are taking a look at three major New York baseball players and their most famous injuries.
First up is Mets third baseman David Wright. Captain of the Mets since 2013, Wright has sustained his fair share of injuries in his time, from concussions to contusions. Most recently the 33-year old was placed on the disabled list for sixty days to deal with his spinal stenosis. Spinal stenosis involves an abnormal narrowing of the spinal canal and can be congenital or more commonly caused by aging and arthritis. With symptoms including pain, numbness, and loss of motor control, it is really pretty amazing to see such a productive comeback helping to lead the Mets to the World Series.
Next is Alex Rodriguez, considered by many to be one of the greatest baseball players of all time. A-Rod’s stellar career has been somewhat marred recently by hip and knee injuries and most recently had hip surgery to correct this. 40-year-old Rodriguez was suffering from a misshapen femur which, for 20 years, hasn’t fit perfectly into his hip socket. A common defect which the infielder has had since birth or childhood, which limits the movement he could achieve in his hip. Thankfully he underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn labrum and had the femur shaved down to fit better into the socket and now is back and playing as well as ever.
Finally, we have Matt Harvey, the Mets’ 26-year old pitcher. Harvey recently missed the whole of the 2014 season due to surgery, despite being one of the most dominant young pitchers in Major League Baseball. Every time he pitches, his fans refer to it as “Harvey Day”, but he’s not the only Major League pitcher to have something named after him. Towards the end of 2013, Harvey had Tommy John Surgery, a procedure most commonly performed on baseball players and named after ex-Yankees pitcher Tommy John who first had the surgery in 1974. The procedure involves ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) reconstruction, where the UCL (in the elbow) is replaced with a tendon from elsewhere in the body. Although it took longer than Harvey had anticipated for it to heal, he was back throwing a baseball just 4 months after the surgery and came back on top form for the 2015 season. He is on the verge of dominating baseball in 2016.
If you want to learn more about any of these injuries – or you suffer from elbow problems, hip and knee problems, or chronic back pain (like these baseball superstars) get in touch here.