Thursday, March 13, 2003
He felt tightness after his first workout of the spring.
WINTER HAVEN, Fla. (AP) -- Cleveland reliever Mark Wohlers said on Sunday that he will leave the team to have his sore right elbow examined.
"There's something going on in there that doesn't feel quite right," said Wohlers, who has missed much of training camp.
James Andrews, a sports orthopedic surgeon, will examine the elbow on Monday. He and Cincinnati Reds medical director Dr. Timothy Kremchek operated on it in 1999.
"This does not feel like back then at all," Wohlers said. "From where I feel it, it is nowhere near the ligament. The best-case scenario is it is just some scar tissue."
Wohlers saved 97 games over a three-year span for Atlanta in the mid-1990s. He returned after surgery to pitch for the Reds and Yankees before signing a two-year contract with Cleveland.
In his first season with the Indians, the 33-year-old went 3-4 with seven saves and a 4.79 ERA in 64 games in 2002.
Wohlers had been encouraged Tuesday after pitching a scoreless inning against Cincinnati in his first outing.
"I threw nothing but fastballs, but felt fine," Wohlers said. "The next day it swelled up. I took a few days off, by Friday there was no swelling, so I played catch Saturday and felt a little something again."
Wohlers said he passed an examination before reporting to training camp last month, but felt tightness soon after his first workout.
"Before I came here, I had an MRI on the ligament and X-ray on the elbow and structurally everything was sound," he said.
Wohlers said if a surgery is necessary, he wants to get it done and be back in uniform as quickly as possible.
"Hopefully, they will just have to go in and clean it up a bit," he said. "That would sideline me for the first few weeks, but I would rather have that than to be babied and spend two or three times on the disabled list.
"Hopefully, I'll still be able to get in 60 to 65 games this year."