Vince Velasquez had offseason surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome

Greg Fiume/Getty Images
9 Comments

Last August, Phillies starter Vince Velasquez was placed on the 10-day disabled list with what was characterized as a “right middle finger injury.” Shortly thereafter, Velasquez underwent season-ending surgery to repair a vascular issue with his right middle finger. GM Matt Klentak said that Velasquez did not have thoracic outlet syndrome, even though Velasquez visited Dr. Robert Thompson, considered one of the foremost experts on TOS.

It turns out that Velasquez did have TOS and he underwent surgery during the offseason remove his first rib, Joseph Santoliquito of Philly Voice reports. The Phillies never shared this information — which is weird — as searches on Twitter and their press release archive have come up empty.

Velasquez said, “I had that surgery this offseason. I had that thoracic outlet syndrome, but it wasn’t really labeled thoracic outlet syndrome. They removed my first rib, but whatever. What I’m saying is the opportunity to bounce back and stay in the game and not have any injuries, I’m actually more thankful about that part than anything else. I can say this is the healthiest I’ve been in five years – it’s prolonging to that point.”

Velasquez, 25, has been slowed by injuries throughout his baseball career. He had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow in September 2010, battled a biceps injury in June 2016, and dealt with a flexor strain his right elbow last May along with TOS. Velasquez carries a 5.05 ERA with a 50/14 K/BB ratio in 41 innings this season. He has shown flashes of greatness, like when he struck out 12 Giants over six innings in his most recent start, but he has also been inconsistent as has been the case throughout his four years in the majors.

Phillies’ Bryce Harper to miss start of season after elbow surgery

Getty Images
2 Comments

PHILADELPHIA – Phillies slugger Bryce Harper will miss the start of the 2023 season after he had reconstructive right elbow surgery.

The operation was performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles.

Harper is expected to return to Philadelphia’s lineup as the designated hitter by the All-Star break. He could be back in right field by the end of the season, according to the team.

The 30-year-old Harper suffered a small ulnar collateral ligament tear in his elbow in April. He last played right field at Miami on April 16. He had a platelet-rich plasma injection in May and shifted to designated hitter.

Harper met Nov. 14 with ElAttrache, who determined the tear did not heal on its own, necessitating surgery.

Even with the elbow injury, Harper led the Phillies to their first World Series since 2009, where they lost in six games to Houston. He hit .349 with six homers and 13 RBIs in 17 postseason games.

In late June, Harper suffered a broken thumb when he was hit by a pitch and was sidelined for two months. The two-time NL MVP still hit .286 with 18 homers and 65 RBIs for the season.

Harper left Washington and signed a 13-year, $330 million contract with the Phillies in 2019. A seven-time All-Star, Harper has 285 career home runs.

With Harper out, the Phillies could use Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber at designated hitter. J.T. Realmuto also could serve as the DH when he needs a break from his catching duties.