May 2013

Stumbling Block or Stepping Stone?

It’s been a while since my last post, and for that I’m sorry. For those social media savvy folks, I know that you’ve kept up with my career over the past year. Although you may not know the specifics, If you’ve followed me for any number of weeks on either Facebook or Twitter, you would know that I’m currently not playing baseball. Many of you have openly wondered what’s going on, and this entry aims to answer those questions.

First, let me fill you in on the basics. In 2009, after a season-long fight, I had shoulder surgery. The understatement of the year would be to say that 2009 was a tough year for me. I rehabbed until halfway through 2010 before finishing that season well. In 2011, I threw a full season and tallied 100+ innings. In May of 2012, I was diagnosed with a shoulder strain. I received a cortisone injection, and due to the severity of the strain, realized that my season was in jeopardy. “They” say that the shoulder will fight you once you’ve had an operation, so I knew that it would be a windy road to recovery. I missed the rest of the season, and toward the end of 2012 and into this past off-season, I felt great. I was throwing pain free, felt strong, and was excited about the season. With the exception of some minor set-backs, I was well on my way to recovery from last year’s strain.

Part of a pitcher’s routine when getting game ready is to face live hitters. This is a great way to simulate a game, and to get some adrenaline pumping. For me, that milestone meant I was just about ready to get back out there again and play professionally. Two weeks ago, on the 37th pitch of a 50 pitch live BP session, I let a fastball go and felt it. The dreaded “it.” Long story short, this blog entry is to announce that I am having my 2nd shoulder surgery next week. This blog entry is also to announce that I have every intention on rehabbing this 2nd shoulder surgery, returning to the mound, and pitching professionally again.

Some have an obstacle thrown in their path and see it as a stumbling block. I refuse to accept that. Is this an obstacle? Absolutely. Did my heart sink when I heard the news? You bet. However, I refuse to let this stop me. This 2nd shoulder surgery is going to be a stepping stone. I’m blessed to have played professional baseball for as long as I have. I’m blessed to have wonderful, supportive people in my life to help me through this. I’m blessed to have an AMAZING medical team around me to operate, rehab, and patch me back up. I’m blessed to have outlets such as my MLBlog, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to share every detail with you as I travel this road…….again.