Placido Polanco scheduled to undergo elbow surgery Friday

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Phillies third baseman Placido Polanco played most of the 2010 season with a painful bone chip in his left elbow.  He also struggled with back problems near the end of the year and into October.  One of those ailments will be taken care of Friday.

According to Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Polanco is scheduled to have bone fragments removed from his elbow and will also have his extensor tendon repaired.

It’s a fairly major combination of procedures, but all signs point to him being fine for the start of spring training next year.

Polanco posted a .298/.339/.386 batting line in 554 at-bats this past season, tallying six home runs, five steals and 52 RBI.  As always, he also showed great range in the infield with an Ultimate Zone Rating of 13.5.

The 35-year-old will earn $5.25 million in 2011, $6.25 million in 2012 and carries a $5.5 million mutual option for 2013.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.