Update on Closer Chad Cordero

Posted by Dave Nichols | Wednesday, April 23, 2008 | , | 0 comments »

Washington, DC--Washington Nationals closer Chad Cordero visited renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews on Wednesday, and as far as the team is concerned--for now--Cordero is healthy enough to pitch. According to a team spokesman, Cordero is suffering from rotator cuff tendinitis and will not require surgery unless there is further injury and will not require a stint on the disabled list..

Nats GM Jim Bowden spoke briefly before the game on Cordero's health. "We were very pleased with the negative MRI today. Dr. Andrews was encouraged," Bowden stated. "We just need to get him to work harder, build up his arm strength." When he was asked about Cordero basically going through a 'spring training' period, Bowden quipped, "Whether he's been throwing 78-80 or 85-87 he's been getting them out." But Bowden conceded that Cordero does need to regain his velocity to be an effective major league pitcher, "Now that he has a specific new program to build the strength up hopefully the velocity will come sooner rather than later."

Cordero was unavailable to pitch Wednesday against the New York Mets as he was travelling back to Washington from Birmingham, AL. He should rejoin the team and be available for Manny Acta's bullpen Thursday or Friday depending on discomfort from the dye injection for the MRI, according to Bowden.

In other injury news, Bowden indicated that both Elijah Dukes, on the DL with a strained hamstring and Dmitri Young, on the DL with a strained lower back, were 7-10 days away from rejoining the team at the minimum. "You know, we're gonna make sure that they're one hundred percent before we put them back on the field so there's no re-injury."

BOTTOM LINE: There's a good chance this is a lingering problem all year long. Despite the sugar-coating by team officials and Cordero himself, the lack of velocity and acknowledged "clicking" in his shoulder are barometers of injury. The team willkeep a close eye on Cordero, his strength and conditioning and his warm-up procedures to hopefully returnt he erstwhile closer to his normal duties.

Update on Closer Chad Cordero also posted at DC Sports Box