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Brian McCann could have surgery, could face a 4-5 month rehab time

Oct 8, 2012, 2:11 PM EDT

Getty Brian McCann Getty Images

Brian McCann struggled mightily down the stretch and was benched in the wild card game in favor of David Ross. There was an awful lot of talk about him being banged up, but it was apparently more than merely being banged up.

David O’Brien reports that McCann was diagnosed midseason with a frayed labrum and cyst in his throwing shoulder, that was mostly in need of rest, not the knife. But he McCann tells him the he will have an MRI within a week to determine the full extent of the damage. McCann is thinking surgery, it it could lead to a long rehab:

“We already basically know what is going to happen, what needs to happen,” McCann said. “I think it’s going to be [a matter of] how long I’m out for. Could be a couple of months, it could be a little more than that. Could be four or five months. We’ll see what happens. We’ll find out. I can’t really say right now, but I’m pretty sure surgery.”

Four months will put him into February and the start of spring training before he can do anything. Five runs well into March. It’s not a stretch to think that McCann — who will likely be playing on the $12 million team option the Braves are expected to exercise after the season is over — could miss the beginning of the season next year.

  1. darthicarus - Oct 8, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    I’m not a professional athlete so perhaps my mind doesn’t work the same as theirs…but to me if I’m hurt & the product I’m putting on the field (myself) is flawed and not performing as it should I would look into getting surgery first or doing whatever it took to get myself back into playing condition instead of “gutting it out” and making my injury worse while hampering my team. Granted the Braves did make the postseason with McCann being hurt but my layman’s thinking that had he taken himself out of play to heal & let Ross or whoever get regular ABs & build up more confidence with the pitching staff that would’ve been better for the Braves to end this current season & lead into next year.

    • natslady - Oct 8, 2012 at 2:49 PM

      Your mind probably works fine. It isn’t just “toughing it out.” Athletes kid themselves ALL the time about (a) how severely they are injured and (b) how important they are to the team. Count the reports you hear of a player hiding an injury–especially pitchers–until it’s indisputable that they are costing the team and they are forcibly SAT DOWN. Not to mention the player “bios” of how they pitched in pain for years and years.

      The same thing happens in “real life.” Kids (and teachers) come to school nose dripping with colds or feverish with the flu, just to infect everyone else around them–and eventually get sick in the nurse’s office and be sent home anyway.

  2. amhendrick - Oct 8, 2012 at 2:51 PM

    Any chance the Braves don’t pick up the option? McCann was pretty bad the 2nd half of last year also.

    • bobulated - Oct 8, 2012 at 3:12 PM

      IMHO, none; with Chipper retiring Mac is now the longest tenured position player on the Braves and slides into the vacant team leadership role.

  3. chc4 - Oct 8, 2012 at 2:56 PM

    Why in the world would the Braves pick up a $12mm option for a guy whose had a terrible season and is facing potentially major shoulder surgery? DECLINE.

    • tryan92 - Oct 9, 2012 at 2:19 PM

      He’s had ONE subpar year, and you’re gonna throw him away? With the exception of this year, McCann made the all-star team Every year since he’s been a rookie. They just said he’s been playing banged up, so you don’t throw that guy away after one bad year. And I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but McCanns “bad year” is still pretty much on par with most of the other catchers in the league. His numbers last year or pretty damn good, and he had an eye problem for half the year.

  4. xmatt0926x - Oct 8, 2012 at 3:34 PM

    You guys are crazy. This isn’t a case of a foggy, mystery injury where you have to wonder how much of his bad season was decline as opposed to injury. This guy is seriously injured and it’s obviously why he struggled. If je has surgery there is no reason to think he can’t come back to form, even if it isn’t until May or June. I’m sure there may be a chance of some decline but I’d gamble on him coming back fine and paying the $12 million. He’s one of the best in the game. If it doesn’t work out and he really is in some kind of deep decline then you’re off the hook when the season ends. Teams have to gamble once in a while.

  5. randygnyc - Oct 8, 2012 at 6:18 PM

    Players often times play injured because they don’t want to give up their job to someone who might outperform them. It’s as simple as not wanting to lose their starting jobs.

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