Wandy Rodriguez has arthritis in his left elbow

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Wandy Rodriguez’s recent visit with Dr. James Andrews was reported as good news, because the Pirates left-hander was told that his elbow injury won’t require surgery. However, it’s not all positive.

Michael Sanserino of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette reports that Dr. Andrews diagnosed Rodriguez with arthritis in his elbow and Rodriguez described the pain he continues to experience when throwing as “feel[ing] like it’s in the bone.”

It sounds like if Rodriguez comes back to pitch for the Pirates this season it’ll be as a reliever. And while avoiding surgery keeps Rodriguez from potentially missing an entire year recovering, an arthritic elbow isn’t exactly a minor issue as the 34-year-old faces a decision on his $13 million player option for 2014.