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Cards pitcher Alex Reyes has season-ending tendon surgery

June 7, 2018

FILE - In this Sept. 29, 2016, file photo, St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Alex Reyes throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds in St. Louis. Cardinals right-hander Alex Reyes underwent season-ending surgery Wednesday, June 6, 2018 to repair a tendon attached to the strained latissimus dorsi muscle in the upper right side of his back. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

ST. LOUIS (AP) — One start after his return from Tommy John surgery, St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Alex Reyes had a season-ending operation Wednesday that repaired a tendon attached to the strained latissimus dorsi muscle in the upper right side of his back.

St. Louis said Dr. Anthony Romeo operated in Philadelphia. Cardinals general manager Michael Girsch said there was partial fraying between the lat tendon and the bone, and the surgery reattached the tendon to the bone. Recovery time is expected to be six months.

Girsch said the team expects Reyes to make a full recovery and be ready for spring training.

“The good news is that when they went in, the tendon was partially frayed. It wasn’t completely torn off, which means there is good blood flow. Which means it’s very optimistic for recovery,” Girsch said.

The surgery was performed immediately after the examination, which was anticipated.

“Our understanding was that when the tendon is torn away from the bone, the longer you wait the more problematic it is for recovery,” Girsch said. “The longer we waited the more risky it was.”

Reyes, widely regarded as the Cardinals’ top prospect, pitched four innings in a 3-2 loss at Milwaukee on May 30. That was his first big league appearance after missing 22 months while recovering from surgery to repair a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching arm.

Reyes’ velocity dropped in the fourth inning of that start, prompting the training staff to make a mound visit. He finished the inning with pitches back in the mid-to-upper 90 mph range.

After the game, Reyes reported extreme soreness around his lat. He was placed on the disabled list the next day.

“We don’t know how this progressed,” Girsch said. “I guess that’s the short answer. No one knows how this progressed, so it’s hard to speculate where among the path he started having issues.”

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