Arizona Diamondbacks, RHP Shelby Miller await opinion of Dr. James Andrews
PHOENIX — There’s no news, at least nothing definitive regarding the status of injured Arizona Diamondbacks starter Shelby Miller, who was placed on the disabled list Monday with right elbow inflammation.
He and the D-backs continue to gather information.
Renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews is the latest set of eyes the D-backs have reached out to. The team sent Miller’s MRI to Andrews on Wednesday. This follows Miller’s visit to Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles and, of course, the first examination by team physician Gary Waslewski.
“It was part of the plan that we had talked about all along, where we were going to have this group (of doctors) look at it and come together and get as much information as we possibly could, and pass it along to Shelby and figure out what the best game-plan is,” manager Torey Lovullo said.
The D-backs hope to hear back from Andrews on Thursday.
Miller said “the soreness and stuff has gone away” that forced him to leave his Sunday start against the Dodgers in the fifth inning. At that time, the D-backs reported Miller was experiencing forearm tightness, which can be a precursor to an elbow injury.
The subsequent MRI on Monday showed “something in there” according to Miller, but the doctors “haven’t given me specifics yet; exactly what it is or how we’re going to handle or what we’re going to do to fix it. Like I said, just kind of wait to see everybody’s opinion … having the best doctors in the country look at it and, I think, it’s the smartest and safest play for all of us.”
Miller may be facing anything from rest and rehab to stem-cell therapy or platelet-rich-plasma injections to Tommy John surgery. Going under the knife would cost Miller the rest of this season and possibly some of 2018.
“Really, honestly, we haven’t discussed anything,” he said.
So, Miller continues to play the waiting game.
“It’s tough because I know I’m going to be down for a little bit of time or out, whatever the case is, and it just sucks to watch these guys go out and compete because I want to be a part of it so bad,” he said. “We’re playing so good, and it’s a tough time for this kind of scenario to pop up, but the biggest thing I can do is, right now, just support my teammates. They’re supporting me through this process and we’ll get it figured out.”
To his credit, Miller is handling the situation well, according to Lovullo.
“Look, we’ve all had situations where we had to go to the doctor and wait for information,” he said. “I think that’s where he’s at. He’s looking at it head-on and he’s waiting for the information as patiently as he possibly can. He seems very positive to me.”
— Miller’s spot in the rotation, at least for now, belongs to right-hander Zack Godley, who was officially recalled from Triple-A Reno to make Wednesday’s start against San Diego.
“He’s going to fall under the same criteria all these other guys do. We’re going to ask him to get 21 outs if that’s possible,” Lovullo said.
Godley, 27, is coming off a seven-inning scoreless outing in Triple-A that included starting the game with six hitless innings at Albuquerque. The effort earned him Pacific Coast League Pitcher of the Week honors.
— By his own admission, left fielder Yasmany Tomas made a mistake when he attempted to rob Jabari Blash of a home run in the seventh inning Tuesday. Rather than turning his body sideways, Tomas put his back to the wall so when he jumped his shoulders hit the wall preventing a better effort on the ball.
“When the player comes to you and says, ‘hang on, this is what I should’ve done, I know I did this the wrong way’… that’s pretty powerful,” Lovullo said. “And then we had fun with it. I know Patrick (Corbin) was talking about him having no vertical and couldn’t get up. He’s probably rubbing it in a little bit because Patrick can do all sorts of whirly bird slam dunks. But, that’s what we do, we have fun with things.”
— Speaking of having fun, following the 9-3 win on Tuesday, the D-backs clubhouse was turned into a pseudo-nightclub complete with a rotating disco ball light in the center of the room.
“I love that stuff, I love that stuff. As long as there’s a separation and it’s the right time and the right moment,” Lovullo said. “They work hard. They’re very focused, and they’re pounding away at things for three hours, three-and-a-half hours and when you win a game, we need to celebrate that moment. They do a good job of separating the good and the bad and the ugly and when it’s time to turn the disco ball on, let’s make it happen.”