2008 NEWS

2008 News > 6/22/08

GLAVINE STILL HOPES TO AVOID SURGERY

By Carroll Rogers, AJC.com

Tom Glavine is hoping four to six weeks will be enough for his left elbow to heal on its own. If not, he could be facing surgery and a decision whether he wants to pitch again next year. At 42, there's a lot on his mind.

"It's not the kind of thing they've given me any guarantees on," said Glavine, who is resting for two weeks before starting to gear up toward a return after the All-Star break.

The flexor tendon in his left elbow is starting to detach from the bone, Glavine said, and neither of the two MRIs he has had can show to what degree. And that's what will determine if it can heal on its own and will require surgery.

"You want [your career] to end on top of your game," Glavine said. "Sometimes your body tells you it's time to go home. If this is the case, much like John [Smoltz] has said, then who am I to complain? I'm lucky I've gotten to this point in my career without going on the DL. I guess time catches up with you sooner or later."

Even if he has to have surgery, Glavine isn't ruling out a return next season if the Braves want him back. But for now he's trying to stay optimistic that he can come back this year.

He had been pitching in pain since early May.

"I'm disappointed because this is not how I envisioned coming back here," Glavine said. "I wanted to pitch a lot of innings and be a stabilizing force in the rotation and win my share of games and help us as a team. On the other hand, for the last month or so, it hasn't been a lot of fun for me to pitch."