Victor Martinez's Knee to Be Operated, Tigers Timetable Not Yet Ready
The Detroit Tigers have announced on their official website that Victor Martinez will face the surgeon's knife to correct his injured knee. The operation is necessary to repair his torn medial meniscus on the left knee.
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Fortunately for the Tigers, the injury has come before the beginning of the season. As a matter of fact, the injury was experienced during a regular offseason training session. The injury did not seem to be serious but an MRI that was carried out later showed that he had suffered a tear in the knee.
Though there is adequate time for Martinez's recovery, the injury could drag him behind for sometime. The operation has been scheduled for next week on Tuesday at Pensacola, Fla. It will be under the stewardship of one doctor James Andrews who happens to be a renowned surgeon.
Since the Tigers don't know what will happen after Martinez's surgery, they have not released the timetable. They can only do so when they know the fate of Martinez and so they have to keep their fingers crossed until next week.
The underlying problem is that the Tigers could make a mistake by including the star in their timetable and then it turns out that he may not be able to play for some weeks or months. That could easily turn into a nightmare.
There are rumors that the Tigers are looking for a potential replacement in case Martinez may need to take a big break from the game. Besides that, the general manager, Dave Dombrowski, stated that he learned about Martinez's injury when he showed up at the Detroit Sports Broadcasters Association luncheon.
Prior to further medical testing, there were some instances of confusion as team doctors could not figure out the exact problem. This is because their observations showed that his ligaments were intact while the meniscus was torn.
On his part, Martinez did not expect the injury to be that intense and was hence shocked because such a severe injury could send him away for weeks. "I talked to him before he actually got the MRI," manager Brad Ausmus said. "He was concerned, and he sounded down initially. Then I talked to him after the MRI, and obviously he was upset. "He was audibly shaken. I can't say visibly shaken because I didn't see him."
The fate of Martinez lies squarely in the hands of Dr. Victor Khabie, Chief of Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Surgery at Northern Westchester Hospital in New York state. This is because he is the one to carry out the operation.
And he has two options, either to clip the ligament or reattach it afresh. Clipping is the better option because it will take about six weeks to recover while reattachment requires six months to heal. Now you know why a replacement is necessary.
"Most ballplayers at his level, especially since he's had multiple surgeries, are going to want to go in and do a clipping," Dr. Khabie said. "One, it gets you back much quicker. Two, the tear isn't in that specific zone [that requires a reattachment]. Ninety percent of the tears are not in that critical zone."
Martinez was actually a runner-up for the American League MVP Award in 2014. The player had recorded 335 battings and 32 home runs and 103 RBIs. Martinez's absence would be tragic because Miguel Cabrera is also away nursing some serious injuries.
"Losing a guy like Victor for any length of time is a big blow," Ausmus said. "Losing that bat, especially when he's really the one power threat from the left side facing a right-handed pitcher, [is tough].
"We're hoping for the best, but as last season showed, losing [reliever Bruce] Rondon and [shortstop Jose] Iglesias for the season, sometimes things are out of your control."