Familia Has Blood Clot Surgery, Return This Year Uncertain
Published May 12th, 2017
MILWAUKEE (AP) — New York Mets closer Jeurys Familia had surgery Friday after being diagnosed with a blood clot near his right armpit, an injury that general manager Sandy Alderson said will sideline the reliever for several months.
The Mets put Familia on the 10-day disabled list before their game Friday against the Milwaukee Brewers and said it was not certain whether the reliever will return this season. They activated first baseman Lucas Duda from the DL.
A World Series hopeful to start the season, the Mets have been decimated by injuries. Their disabled list already included ace Noah Syndegaard and All-Star slugger Yoenis Cespedes, along with catcher Travis d'Arnaud and third baseman David Wright.
"Why does God hate the Mets?" the New York Post lamented in front-page headline featuring a forlorn-looking Mr. Met mascot and a smaller headline: "Another injury for cursed team."
"They're pretty painful at times," manager Terry Collins said in Milwaukee about the rash of injuries. "This is a big one. This guy is arguably one of the best closers in the game."
Familia's move was made retroactive to Thursday, the day after his last appearance. He was diagnosed at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York and flew to St. Louis to see a doctor Friday morning for more tests.
Alderson said he hoped have more details on the procedure during the game, though Familia's condition did not rise to being a "life-threatening situation."
"We do believe that this is something that will keep him out several months," the general manager said. "It's possible that he'll be back by the end of the year. It's possible he won't. We just don't know at this point."
Familia told trainers on Wednesday that he had some tingling in his right ring finger, which Alderson said was the first mention of the condition. The right-hander was checked out during the game, when it was determined that Familiar had some mild vascular symptoms that required follow-up.
Familia blew a save situation Wednesday and took the loss in a 6-5 defeat to the Giants.
"That right ring finger, Jeurys said he doesn't even use that finger when he pitches, so he was cleared to pitch," Alderson said.
Familia is 1-1 with a 3.86 ERA and three saves this season. He led the majors with a Mets-record 51 saves last year.
"Yesterday was a real tough day for a lot of us," Collins said Friday at Miller Park. "Today, we've got to get ourselves ready to play tonight."
The loss of Familia is the latest blow for a team that also had to deal this week with the three-game suspension of Matt Harvey for skipping a game last weekend following a late night on the town. Harvey was scheduled to make his first start since the suspension on Friday against the Brewers.
Duda returns after being sidelined by a hyperextended left elbow. He started at first base and batted seventh.
Cespedes, who has been sidelined since April 28 with a strained left hamstring, was doing some baseball activities including batting practice, Alderson said. The outfielder had tests on his lower back in New York this week to determine where there were any problems that might be affecting his hamstring.
"That all checked out well. So, he's making good progress, expect him back soon," Alderson said. "I wouldn't want to put a time frame on it, but we don't expect him to be out indefinitely."
Among other injured Mets, Alderson said that pitchers Steven Matz (left elbow) and Seth Lugo (right elbow) remain on track to return around the end of May or the beginning of June. They were each scheduled to throw on Saturday.
Wright (recovery from neck surgery) is on the 60-day DL. D'Arnaud (right wrist) has not resumed hitting since going on the DL on May 3.
"He's progressing. At this point, it's baseball activity tolerance ... anything he's doing is one-handed," Alderson said. "We just don't want to test the wrist too soon."