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Alvarez Hopes To Delay Surgery

May 11, 2000

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) _ Tampa Bay’s Wilson Alvarez needs surgery for a rotator cuff problem in his pitching shoulder, but hopes to delay the arthroscopic procedure until the end of the season.

The left-hander, on the disabled list for the fourth time in three seasons with the Devil Rays, said Wednesday that he hopes to start throwing in the bullpen next week and will try to pitch through the discomfort he’s felt since spring training.

``The way I feel I’ll be back in three weeks.″ Alvarez said. ``I’ll pitch this season and at the end of the season I’ll get the surgery done. Right after my last start,″

Alvarez, earning $9 million in the third season of a five-year, $35 million contract, appeared be on track for an early May return before experiencing a setback following a rehab start for Class A St. Petersburg on April 15.

He said ``wear and tear″ on his rotator cuff is causing the discomfort in his shoulder, adding that surgery would involve shaving the clavicle to reduce an impingement in his shoulder.

The 30-year-old is 15-23 in two seasons with the Devil Rays.

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