Dr. Lewis Yocum advises rehab over surgery for Jake Arrieta

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Orioles rookie Jake Arrieta was tentatively scheduled to have a bone spur removed from his elbow this week, but instead he sought a second opinion from renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. Lewis Yocum, who advised him to rehab rather than going under the knife.
Obviously avoiding surgery is always the preference, particularly for a 24-year-old pitcher, but generally speaking the removal of a bone spur is considered a minor procedure with few long-term risks associated. Dozens of big-league pitchers have it done every season without much fanfare.
According to Brittany Ghiroli of MLB.com, after looking at the MRI results Yocum concluded that the bone spur “doesn’t hamper him at all.” Arrieta finishes his rookie campaign with a 4.66 ERA and 52/48 K/BB ratio in 100 innings spread over 18 starts. Assuming that Yocum is right, Arrieta will have a full-time spot in the Orioles’ rotation next season.

Play of the Day: Fan reaches over second deck railing, catches foul ball with her hat

MILWAUKEE, WI - JULY 28:  Paul Goldschmidt #44 of the Arizona Diamondbacks hits a single in the sixth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on July 28, 2016 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
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Today’s play of the day wasn’t made by a professional athlete. Rather, it was made by a fan in the second deck on the first base side at Miller Park during Thursday afternoon’s game between the Diamondbacks and Brewers.

Phil Gosselin fouled off a 1-1 fastball from Will Smith to the right side. A fan wearing purple — perhaps in support of the D-Backs? — leaned over the railing of the second deck and snagged the ball with her bucket hat.

The Brewers beat the Diamondbacks 6-4. They took three games out of the four-game series. Heading into the August 1 non-waiver trade deadline, they’ll host the Pirates for three games.

Royals place Luke Hochevar on the disabled list

ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 29: Reliever Luke Hochevar #44 of the Kansas City Royals pitches against the St. Louis Cardinals in the seventh inning at Busch Stadium on June 29, 2016 in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
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The Royals announced on Thursday evening that reliever Luke Hochevar has been placed on the 15-day disabled list (retroactive to July 25) as he’s showing signs of thoracic outlet syndrome, MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports. Reliever Brooks Pounders has been recalled from Triple-A Omaha.

Thoracic outlet syndrome, simply put, is the compression of blood vessels and nerves between the neck and the shoulder. As we’ve seen lately, the fix for this often involves surgery to remove the pitcher’s upper rib.

Hochevar, 32, has compiled a 3.86 ERA with a 40/9 K/BB ratio in 37 1/3 innings. The right-hander, who can become a free agent after the season if either he or the Royals decline his 2017 option, was a potential trade candidate recently mentioned by Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball.