It appears that the oft-injured Devin Mesoraco underwent yet another surgery yesterday. This surgery was to repair the labrum in his right hip; if you’ll recall, it was the left hip that caused all the problems last year.

Mesoraco was already out for the season after he had surgery in May to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder. This latest procedure was performed in New York by hip specialist Dr. Bryan Kelly, who also repaired the torn labrum in his left hip in June 2015.

The procedure was considered a preventative operation. After Mesoraco had successful surgery on the left hip last year, it was noticed that his right hip was starting to show signs of having similar issues.

“We did not want him to have symptoms and problems with his right hip, say the middle of next year or the end of next year or the beginning of next year,” Reds medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek said. “[Kelly] said there was a 100 percent chance that at some point in his career that this was going to end up bothering him and he’d end up needing surgery.”

After his breakout All-Star campaign in 2014, Mesoraco has been able to make just 18 starts in two seasons. It’s really a sad story, and we’ll be examining what the future holds for Mesoraco in the next couple of weeks here at RN. I’m not particularly optimistic that Mesoraco will ever be able to be a full-time catcher again, but I hope I’m wrong. Dr. Kremchek thinks Mesoraco will be able to return as a backstop:

Our guy Steve also seems optimistic. You’ll remember that Steve did a great deep dive on Mesoraco’s hip problems and his chances for recovery (you should really go read that piece; it’s outstanding).

Fingers are crossed for Mesoraco here at Redleg Nation World Headquarters. His health — and where he’s playing in the field — will be the number one storyline to watch during next year’s spring training.

11 Responses

  1. David

    Agreed that the second hip surgery is preventive and probably a good thing.

    But recovering from his labrum tear is serious, and I don’t think it is going to happen. That is probably a career ending surgery for a baseball player, or most other pro athletes.

    I hope Devin recovers, he is a good guy. But I don’t think it is going to happen.

  2. ohiojimw

    Here is wishing Meso well in all senses of the word.

    Just last week there was a post here exploring the expanding use of sports science in analyzing pitching technique and how the human body works mechanically to deliver pitches.

    It is easy to see a world in the not too distant future where overlaying of the movements of catching with the body structure and motion patterns of a specific player might predict the hip and perhaps even shoulder issues such as Meso has experienced.

    Can’t help but think this is going to open a can of legal, privacy and ultimately financial issues to be worked out in future collective bargaining agreements.

  3. mdhabel

    Not that this wasn’t the case before yesterday, but worth stating that Barnhart still has a huge opportunity to prove he can stick as an everyday player.

    Looking at some of his metrics, he seems to have improved in some areas but not in others. He is hitting the ball harder and swinging at less pitches out of the zone, yet he is striking out more and making less contact than his career rate (maybe he is over-swinging?) and walking less than his career rate I will be paying very close attention to him the remainder to the year to see if he can show any more improvements and get closer to an average offensive player.

    Also, I have no idea how much value this can actually add, but it would be great if he could develop into our starting catcher and get the chance to grow with these young pitchers and build some good rapport, assuming the worst case that Mes is no longer a MLB catcher.

  4. lwblogger2

    I’m glad that Steve is optimistic and that the news from Dr. Kremcheck was about as good as it can be. Still, having a lot of experience behind the plate, I can’t say I feel to good about any of this. I can only imagine how Mesoraco must feel.

  5. John Gattermeyer

    I’m glad Mes is dealing with this now. There’s no reason to think he can’t come back from his hip procedures. The shoulder labral tear is a little bit dicier, but the left shoulder v. right shoulder discussion is relevant. He throws with his right, his right shoulder engages more in the swing, and I think the fact it isn’t his right shoulder or his rotator cuff suggests he could be back to full Mes. Hope! It springs eternal!

  6. Steve Schoenbaechler

    Frankly, not surprised. Couldn’t consider this the first time in, could we?

    I believe it would be a stupid decision to put Devin back there, anyhow. Get him in the OF where we could potentially use his bat everyday. I really haven’t had a problem with Tucker and Ramon back there. And, hopefully, Tyler Stephenson will move quick enough through the ranks that we won’t miss much of anything. Tucker/Ramon’s hitting and defense is right about at the middle of the league as far as C goes. Also, it’s sort of nice to have a switch hitter on the bench at all times that you can go to.

    Don’t get me wrong. Would I rather have Devin back there? Most definitely. But, if we can get Devin into the OF, I would rather have that. And, I believe we have a do-able plan B for catcher.

    • Bill

      If he moves to outfield who loses a spot? Duvall and Winker appear to be the plan in the corners when Bruce leaves. Does Duvall then move to 3B, Suarez to 2B, Pereza to SS? I think he goes back behind the plate if the hip holds up, but I think his time there is limited

      • ncmountie1

        I agree with SS-he doesn’t need to be back behind the plate any longer. Duvall could go to 3rd but who really can say he will continue to put up power numbers? Furthermore who is to say Mez wasn’t a 1-year wonder at plate? Hard to say with all the injuries what was mental or physical.

  7. reaganspad

    I am rehabbing a torn labrum in my hip right now myself. I have had diagnosis of total hip replacement all the way to PT with the shot of steroids (which was the direction I opted for).

    At worst, I was limping and feeling Devin’s pain. Now with PT, strengthening of the joint, lots of stretching and Relief Factor, I am running again.

    I have been a long time runner without being a very good stretcher and it caught up with me. But this labrum in the hip stuff can be treated. they will not have to amputate Devin’s leg.

    I would expect Devin back in full health and champing at the bit

  8. Dan

    In this age of political correctness and in ensuring safety and health first maybe it is time to change the catchers position even more. MLB has taken strides to limit contact on the catcher maybe now they need to change the position to having the catcher sit in a chair or creating some form of sloop or wall to better assist the catchers positioning. Sounds stupid I know but surely there are some things they can try out to reduce the physical stress of catching every day

    • greenmtred

      Political correctness? What does that have to do with anything?