Blog Entry

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

Posted on: February 5, 2009 2:48 pm
Edited on: February 5, 2009 2:54 pm

Ben Sheets, the injury-plagued, free-agent starting pitcher, is expected to undergo elbow surgery and be sidelined for four to six months, according to sources.

The surgery, to repair Sheets' partially torn flexor tendon, is expected to be performed by noted orthopedist Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala. A source with knowledge of the situation said that Sheets is not expected to undergo Tommy John ligament replacement surgery.

Still, the elbow surgery likely will keep Sheets on the sidelines until August, or later. The right-hander was prepared to undergo surgery this week, according to sources, but those plans hit a snag over insurance issues and who would pay for it.

Sheets' agent, Casey Close, could not be reached for comment, but sources say that he maintains Milwaukee should pay for the surgery since the injury stems from his time with the Brewers. While that dispute is resolved, Sheets now hopes to have the surgery next week, sources say.

The news comes late in a winter that Sheets and many other free agents have found to be exceptionally cold, and it helps explain why several conversations between the right-hander and the Texas Rangers have yet to evolve into a contract.

Talks between the Rangers and Sheets reached an impasse within the past several days, according to a person with knowledge of the discussions. The two sides were close to agreement on a two-year deal, according to a major-league source, but they already had concerns regarding the right-handers' checkered health history. It is believed that the physical examination revealed the tear and caused the Rangers to scotch the deal.

Sheets' elbow became sore last September during a season in which the right-hander worked 198 innings -- his highest total since 2004. But he came up lame down the stretch and surrendered 10 runs and 15 hits in just over 10 innings of his final three starts. He was unable to pitch in Milwaukee's first-round playoff series loss to Philadelphia.

Since 2001, Sheets, 30, has spent time on the disabled list with right rotator cuff tendinitis, a severe inner-ear infection, a torn back muscle, a right shoulder strain, tendinitis in his right shoulder and a sprained right middle finger.

In eight seasons with the Brewers, Sheets has compiled an 86-83 career record with a 3.72 ERA. When he's healthy, Sheets has the stuff of a staff ace. But staying healthy has been his biggest challenge.

Sheets was 13-9 with a 3.01 ERA in 31 starts for the Brewers in 2008 and was the National League's starting pitcher in the All-Star Game. He also earned $11 million in the final season of a four-year, $38.5 million deal.

The Brewers offered him arbitration in December and, had he accepted, he likely would have gotten a raise from that $11 million for 2009. However, while Sheets' departure saved the Brewers some money, news of his likely impending surgery before he signed a free agent contract will cost Milwaukee draft picks. The Brewers were to receive two compensatory picks from the team signing Sheets.


Since: Jan 6, 2008
Posted on: February 5, 2009 4:57 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

You're jumping the gun.If you would read up on the guy or knew anything about him, you would see that he is one of the most upstanding guys in baseball.He's never in trouble, you don't here him shooting off at the mouth, and he supports many charities.

As for the surgery, the Brewers made alot more money off of him than he did off the Brewers.(So yes they should pay for it.Shouldn't matter how rich he is.) Would you pay for your own?

So why don't rehab or get your own life. And shut your trap in the process.   

Tampa Hurricane
Since: Mar 27, 2008
Posted on: February 5, 2009 4:55 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Jul 2, 2007
Posted on: February 5, 2009 4:50 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

Recovering from surgery on a torn flexor tendon may keep you out "4 to 6 months," but it will take him at least 8 to 10 months to fully recover making a meaningful return to baseball irrelevant until 2010.

Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: February 5, 2009 4:41 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

What is there to not know? Of course they knew he was injured. We all knew he was injured (based on it being his 'time of the year ') even before he got injured in the first place.

Since: Dec 22, 2008
Posted on: February 5, 2009 4:39 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

Im sorry Sheets is injured yet again    Im glad and somewhat surprised that the unlucky Mets didnt sign him and THEN find out about his injury

Since: Aug 20, 2006
Posted on: February 5, 2009 4:33 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

Tell me Milwaukee didn't know he was injured.  That is why they never tried to resign him.

Since: Jan 13, 2009
Posted on: February 5, 2009 4:15 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

This is awful for Ben Sheets and phenomenal for a playoff contender.  He couldve stayed the Brewers ace and got his going rate for an injury prone pitcher with tons of potential, around $10-12 million.  Now, if he comes back and proves he is health, he could possibly provide a huge lift to a contender.  Give him a cheap deal w/ incentives for a player option at a higher base price if he meets the requirements and remains healthy until next year.  Then, in 2011, you can make a decision on if he is worth the risk.

Since: Apr 12, 2007
Posted on: February 5, 2009 3:52 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

Probably cause he thought he could hide the injury from the rest of the league and get a bigger paycheck.

Since: Dec 17, 2008
Posted on: February 5, 2009 3:51 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

This is completely ridiculous!!

I call fraud on this whole deal.  Ben Sheets OBVIOUSLY knew he was hurt last fall, and he should have had surgery done back then....instead he tried to cash in on a new contract with an unsuspecting team....UNREAL!  He would have gone to camp with Texas and then....' shoulder elbow hurts....'.....what a joke!!!

And now that he KNOWS nobody will sign him....HE EXPECTS HIS OLD TEAM TO PAY FOR THE SURGERY?

Suck it up  'Cover Up' Sheets.....blame your conniving agent, and your obviously unscrupulous parents for raisiing you so poorly, pay for your own fricken' surgery and try and rehab your life, your elbow and the tatters that are your career!!

Since: Feb 22, 2008
Posted on: February 5, 2009 3:43 pm

Sheets expects to have surgery soon

Was Sheets and his agent trying to pull a fast one?? Did they try to get the Rangers (and other teams) to sign him before it was revealed that he needed surgery? How long did he know this, and why not take care of it sooner than later?? His 2009 season is probably shot, and he will have to sign a minor league contract with a spring training invite for 2010. What a waste.

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