February 9, 2012
Surgery ends Harden's season
By QMI Agency
Canadian Rich Harden, who has been pitching for years with a torn right shoulder capsule, finally has undergone surgery to correct the problem.
But it will cost him the 2012 season.
The tear had forced the 30-year-old to alter his pitching delivery and that led to other injuries.
Harden, a nine-year veteran who pitched last season for the Oakland Athletics, told the San Francisco Chronicle he hopes to return in 2013.
"There's no reason, if I work hard, I can't get back to where I was before," the native of Victoria, B.C., said.
The right-hander said he tore the capsule trying to field a comebacker with his bare hand April 15, 2007, pitching for the A's against the Yankees. To compensate he revamped his pitching motion but was slowed by other ailments.
"If you look at those injuries, that's definitely where they came from," Harden told the Chronicle. "Yes, I've been injured a lot, but nobody really knew what I'd been dealing with for five years. Every day, just to play catch, I had to re-train my body to throw. I was pushing the ball. I'd start the game throwing 86-87 m.p.h. and that was max effort."
Last week, Harden finally decided to have Dr. James Andrews perform surgery on his shoulder.
"Dr. Andrews sounded pretty surprised when he got in there about how I made it this long without surgery," Harden said.