by Dan Cook, WCCO Radio
Glen Perkins spoke with the media before Friday nights game against the Yankees about the decision announced yesterday to have season-ending shoulder surgery.READ MORE: Supply Chain Issues: 'There Really Are Problems Everywhere,' Even For Small Companies
“It’s torn. The labrum is torn,” Perkins said, “What they call ‘posteriorly’ and ‘anteriorly’ – uh, the front and the back. And, you know, that’s kinda where I’m getting the discomfort and the feeling of not being stable in my shoulder.”
Perkins didn’t think there was a specific game or pitch where he injured the labrum, rather it was a repetitive use injury that seems to crop up often with pitchers that throw hard in high-leverage situations.
“It’s a degenerative thing. From what I understand these things aren’t something typically that you feel on like ‘a pitch’ like you do with an elbow or like I did with my lat,” Perkins said, “It’s like watching kids grow. You don’t notice them growing day-to-day. And then all of a sudden they’re bigger. So I think for my shoulder, you don’t notice until it gets to the point where you can’t do what you’re tying to day. There wasn’t any certain day or certain time.”
He first felt discomfort in Spring Training and by the time the regular season started in April, it was clear he wasn’t going to be able to pitch through the pain in his shoulder. At that time, in consultation with the team and doctors, he decided to try and rest and rehab the shoulder.
GM Terry Ryan said on Wednesday, that’s the preferred method of treatment.
“That’s why we went through the two months or so,” Ryan said, “You always want to avoid surgery if you can. We went through the two months of rehab. Didn’t work.”
But each time Perkins would try to ramp up throwing after rest and rehabilitation, he start experiencing discomfort again. So he got a second opinion from local doctors and a third from Dodgers team physician Dr. Neal ElAttrache, and it wasn’t long before there was a consensus that the time to do the surgery was now.READ MORE: This Virtual Minneapolis Took A Local High Schooler 770 Hours To Build
“Like I said, I rehabbed for two months,” Perkins said, “I don’t want to keep rehabbing and start to push my timeline into next season. The right time to do it is now.”
Which isn’t to say Glen regrets trying to rehab his shoulder first.
“One of the first things when I got out to LA that he [ElAttrache] said to me,” Perkins said, “was it was worth trying to rehab because it’s not a good surgery, and also going into it I’ll be that much stronger when I come out.”
Perkins is hoping to have surgery next week, though Dr. ElAttrache’s services are in high demand. And with that scheduling uncertainty comes an uncertain timeline for his return to the mound.
“We don’t even have a surgery date yet, so to put a timeline on when I’m going to come back not knowing what I’m going to have done particularly and also not knowing when I’m going to have it done – it’s, right now, hard to predict anything,” Perkins said, “I think after I get the operation done then we’ll have a pretty concrete idea of what kind of timeline we’re dealing with.”
But for his part, Perkins is already starting to focus on working hard to make his rehabilitation from surgery successful.
“I’ll give rehab everything I’ve got,” Perkins said, “I’m excited at the prospect of hopefully pitching without pain and discomfort and the things I’ve dealt with over the last couple of months here. It’s a lot of unknowns, but hopefully like I said, it won’t because I didn’t put forth the effort and that I didn’t have a good surgeon do the work.”MORE NEWS: Fourth Stimulus Check: Can You Expect Another Relief Payment?