2008 NEWS

2008 News > 6/10/08

GLAVINE LEAVES WITH ELBOW STRAIN, HEADED TO DL

By Mark Bowman, MLB.com

CHICAGO -- It took Tom Glavine more than 20 years to find an injury that would force him to go on the disabled list. He didn't have to wait nearly as long to make his second trip.

After Glavine struggled through three innings during Tuesday night's 10-5 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field, Braves manager Bobby Cox announced that the southpaw was going on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left elbow.

Glavine has been battling discomfort since his May 4 start against the Reds and has proven throughout his career that he is willing to pitch through pain. But now that the injury is damaging his effectiveness, the 42-year-old hurler has decided it's best to take another rest.

"It's been sore since then and it hasn't been getting any better," Glavine said. "It was previously just sore in between starts. Then as the game would go on, I would get a little bit stiff. The last two games, it's been pretty much every pitch that I throw."

Glavine will return to Atlanta on Wednesday and likely undergo an MRI scan on Thursday. The Braves are hopeful that a couple weeks of rest will be enough for their 300-game winner, who can remember only one other instance when he had problems with his elbow.

After needing 72 pitches to complete three innings on Tuesday, Glavine returned to the dugout and told Cox that he couldn't continue pitching.

"I've been trying to battle through it and fight through it," Glavine said. "But eventually it just comes to a point where I'm not helping us. As much as I want to fight through it, tonight was just a point where enough was enough."

At his age, Glavine obviously has concerns that he could be facing a serious elbow injury. But for now, he's hopeful that he won't need to miss any extended period of time.

"It concerns me because it's not getting any better and it's not allowing me to do what I want to do all of the time," Glavine said. When I throw the ball the way I want, it hurts. When I try to find a slot so that it doesn't hurt, I can't throw it where I want to. So I'm kind of beating my head against the wall."

Glavine, who was on the disabled list earlier this season with a strained right hamstring, joins John Smoltz and Mike Hampton as projected preseason starters who are now sidelined for an indefinite period. Peter Moylan, like Smoltz, is definitely gone for the season and projected closer Rafael Soriano has a troublesome right elbow that makes him a question mark on a daily basis.

This wasn't what Glavine envisioned when he decided to return to the Braves this season.

"With everything going on and Smoltzie going down, I've kept my fingers crossed that eventually it would get better," Glavine said. "But it hasn't and it's just pouring salt on an open wound for us right now."

The Braves won't make a corresponding transaction on Wednesday. They may wait until Sunday, which is when Glavine was scheduled to face the Angels. They could choose to promote Charlie Morton, who has posted a 2.05 ERA from Triple-A Richmond. Morton pitched this past Sunday and would have plenty of rest.