Utley’s recovery remains 4-6 months
Hip surgery successful; Feliz’s back surgery also goes well
By Ken Mandel / MLB.com
Well, at least it isn’t any worse. Come back feeling better, guys.
PHILADELPHIA — A day after surgery on his right hip, the prognosis for Phillies All-Star Chase Utley’s return remains at four to six months.
Providing further details, the Phillies said in a press release on Tuesday that the three-time All Star had surgery Monday morning to trim the labrum and a bony lesion in his right hip at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York.
Dr. Bryan Kelly performed the procedure, which was described as an “arthroscopic debridement.” Kelly said the surgery went well and the findings were consistent with the tests performed before the operation.
“Our early reports are that it was very successful surgery,” Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said at Monday’s red-carpet premiere for the release of the DVD commemorating the 2008 World Series champions. “It was favorable.”
The team also provided a medical update for third baseman Pedro Feliz, who had a lumbar discectomy performed Nov. 20 by back specialist Dr. Robert Watkins in Los Angeles. That procedure also went well, and Feliz will return home to complete a rehabilitation program, which is expected to require eight to 12 weeks.
Utley’s return target date remains unclear. A six-month recovery would keep him out until June, though the four-month time frame could have him ready by Opening Day. With those extremes, the realistic approach might be looking late April or early May.
Through June 3, the All-Star second baseman was batting .321 with a .684 slugging percentage and was leading the Major Leagues with 21 home runs. He had become the early favorite for the National League Most Valuable Player Award. But after that, his production dropped, and he hit .272 with 12 homers.
“He’s strong and will come back and be fine,” reliever Ryan Madson said. “We don’t want him to rush back, though. We want him to be ready.”
Depending on Utley’s progression, the team may line up backup plans for a short-term replacement. Former Phillies Nick Punto and Tadahito Iguchi have been linked as possibilities. (H/T Phillies.com)
Good to hear that the opeartions on both Utley and Feliz went well. Okay, guys, especially you, Utley, take this time to fully recover. That would be best for both you and the team as a whole.