Cliff Lee has a Strained Abdomen
Here’s some unpleasant news, via Larry Stone’s twitter account:
Mystery solved: Cliff Lee has a right lower abdominal strain and was treated in Seattle today by team doctor Edward Khalfayan.
To add injury to insult, re: the whole suspension thing:
Wakamatsu: Lee believes he suffered abdominal strain during collision with Arizona’s Chris Snyder in Tucson last Monday.
For those of you out there unfamiliar with abdominal strains, their worst feature is that they’re easy to aggravate, being one of those core stabilizing muscles. This also contributes to slow recovery times. It’s not the same exact thing, but think of last year when Kelley and Fields both missed months of time due to oblique injuries and you’d see why this might be problematic.
The M’s solution has been to inject some platelet-rich plasma into the area and wait a week to see what happens. Despite how it may sound, this is more scientifically sound than when Professor Farnsworth used stem cells to fight the aging process on that one episode of Futurama. In addition to various other uses, including bone mending, PR-P has had some practical applications in sports medicine on things like tendinitis, though the application of it in such measures is only a few years old.
In the past, Cliff Lee missed about two months of time in 2003 due to a similar injury coupled with a hernia, and in ’07, he missed a full month. One can be somewhat hopeful that the new treatment method might help things, but to say the team is weaker without him is quite the understatement, particularly with the back three in the rotation not looking too hot at the moment. The M’s get off a bit easy facing Kansas City, Baltimore, and Oakland for thirteen games in the month of April, but the eleven games total within the division (we escape having to face the Angels) could also make for a bad place to lose ground out of the gate.