Choo to have season-ending elbow surgery
SEATTLE -- Rangers outfielder Shin-Soo Choo is expected to undergo surgery to have a bone spur removed from his left elbow as early as Friday and will not play again this season. The Rangers called up outfielder Michael Choice from Triple-A Round Rock to replace him.
Choo has been bothered by elbow problems since Spring Training although he has been trying to play through both that and a sprained right ankle. The Rangers were planning to shut him down at the beginning of September but moved that up a week because he came down with the flu this past weekend and has been running a fever. He did not travel with the Rangers to Seattle.
The Rangers want him to get the elbow cleaned up because the recovery time is two months. They want him back at full strength by Nov. 1 so he can go through a full, normal offseason conditioning program. That's why they had targeted Sept. 1 as the shutdown date.
"It cleared up for the most part after Spring Training," general manager Jon Daniels said. "It bothered him on long throws and hard throws. He was aware of it. We want to get it completely cleaned up."
Choo, who signed a seven-year, $130 million contract as a free agent this offseason, finished his first season with the Rangers hitting .242 with 58 runs scored, 13 home runs, 40 RBIs, a .340 on-base percentage and a .374 slugging percentage. All batting, slugging and on-base percentages were his lowest since he began playing regularly in 2008.
"More than anything, the ankle played a big part early," manager Ron Washington said. "Once that got rolling, he couldn't stop it. In this game when things go south, it's hard to correct."
Washington still suggested that in some ways, Choo had a "strong" first season with the Rangers.
"With all the adversity, he didn't shut it down," Washington said. "He kept fighting. I admire the way he went about his business through all the adversity. It was tough but he didn't complain."