St. Petersburg, FL, United States (4E Sports) – Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Jeremy Hellickson underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow and is expected to miss the first six to eight weeks of the season.
According to media reports, the right-handed Hellickson had the procedure to remove loose bodies from his right elbow last week after settling his arbitration case for $3.67 million on Jan. 17.
“I guess a lot of people were doubting me toward the end of last year, so I was motivated to get back out there and do what I know I can do,” Hellickson said.
“It’s frustrating to go through this and have to miss a month, month and a half. But I’m just going to rehab, work hard and try to get back out there as soon as possible,” he added.
Hellickson went 12-10 with a 5.17 ERA last season for the Rays. He also lowered his walk rate — only 50 in 174 innings pitched — and increased his strikeout rate (135), while opponents hit .333 with runners in scoring position.
Hellickson threw his first bullpen session on Jan. 15 with no issues but his arm “locked up” during the second session a few days later.
“It was just a completely different feeling,” Hellickson added. “I’ve never felt that uncomfortable on the mound and throwing as I did in that bullpen.”
So Hellickson reached out to head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield, flew to Florida for tests and underwent surgery. Dr. Koco Eaton performed the procedure.