Three key Washington Nationals underwent surgery in the last three days and are facing 4-to-6 weeks of recovery, the team announced on Saturday.
Ace Stephen Strasburg had arthroscopic surgery on Friday to remove bone chips from his right elbow, outfielder Bryce Harper had the bursa sac in his left knee repaired, and first baseman Adam LaRoche had loose bodies in his left elbow removed.
Both Strasburg and LaRoche never mentioned their injuries during the season, while Harper experienced lingering knee pain over the final four and a half months of 2013.
Strasburg, 25, will require the longest recovery time after he resumes throwing, according to CSNWashington.com's Mark Zuckerman.
From the report:
Strasburg had to be scratched from two consecutive September starts with what the Nationals said at the time was “forearm tightness,” an ailment he experienced while playing catch the day before he was scheduled to pitch. The right-hander did return to make two final starts before the season ended and reported no problems, but the forearm tightness may have been a byproduct of the elbow injury.All three players are expected to be ready for spring training under new manager Matt Williams, who the team is reportedly planning to hire.
Strasburg has dealt with a few other minor injuries since returning from the Tommy John surgery in 2011, but until now none were tied to his arm. The 25-year-old went 8-9 with a 3.00 ERA in 30 starts this season, totaling a career-high 183 innings. He’s expected to resume his throwing program in 4-to-6 weeks, though full recovery for pitchers who have bone chips removed from their elbows typically is 3-to-4 months. That should still coincide with the start of spring training.