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Pena had surgery; will miss WBC

Posted Jan 29, 2009 by Marc Lancaster

Updated Jan 29, 2009 at 05:22 PM

The Rays informed us today that Carlos Pena underwent “minor” surgery January 8 to repair a tear to his lower abdominal muscle.

Pena apparently visited Dr. William Myers in Philadelphia to have the problem checked out and decided to have surgery right there and then.

The team emphasized that the procedure was minor and Pena will be ready for spring training, but it will be enough to keep him from playing for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic.

Updating: Talked to Pena, who said the discomfort began in August and he played through it for the duration.

“I just had extreme pain toward the end of the year last year,” he said.

The pain was the worst when he checked his swing and when he ran, and it was bad enough that he said he got two cortisone shots to help alleviate it.

He had hoped rest would heal the problem, but he could tell early this month that it was still going to be an issue, and he eventually sought out Dr. Myers, a specialist. A quick look at the MRI showed two tears in Pena’s abdominal muscle and the doctor said Pena would be “like new” if he underwent a quick surgical procedure. Pena didn’t argue and said he feels much better now.

“It’s not like right now I’m going to go out there and run 100-yard dashes, I’m not going to be that crazy,” said Pena, “but I do feel good.”

Pena said he’ll be “cautious” in the opening weeks of spring training, knowing there’s no reason to push too hard even if he is feeling good. His only disappointment is that he won’t be able to represent his native country in the WBC.

“I was very disappointed with that, because I was so excited to be part of that,” he said.



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