A-Rod to have surgery, miss 6-9 weeks

NEW YORK (TICKER) New York Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez will undergo surgery after all.

After days of weighing his options, Rodriguez opted to have surgery on Monday to repair a torn labrum in his right hip, according to a report on MLB.com.

Rodriguez is expected to miss about six to nine weeks following what is being described as a “hybrid” surgical procedure.

A full-blown surgical procedure, which Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said was debated for the past 48 hours, would have sidelined Rodriguez up to four months.

“The goal here is to allow Alex to rehab rapidly in a safe manner,” said Dr. Marc Philippon at the Steadman-Hawkins clinic for sports medicine and orthopedic surgery. “The approach we’re using is much safer than letting Alex play the way he is now.”

Rodriguez will undergo another surgery following the season to fully repair the injury.

It is the latest setback in a tumultuous offseason for the embattled star, who admitted earlier this offseason that he used performance-enhancing drugs from 2001-03.

After initially experiencing right hip tightness and stiffness, Rodriguez was examined by Dr. Chris Ahmad - the Yankees’ team physician - on February 28 in Tampa. An MRI exam revealed the formation of the cyst in the right hip.

Rodriguez then flew to Vail, Colorado on Wednesday to be examined by Phillipon, a hip specialist at the Steadman-Hawkins Clinic. He had the cyst drained that day.

The 33-year-old Rodriguez had endured discomfort in his right hip dating to last season, Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Wednesday.

Rodriguez had been scheduled to play for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic, an event he was forced to withdraw from after the diagnosis.

Sports Illustrated first reported in February that Rodriguez had tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs in 2003.

Rodriguez held a news conference days later at the Yankees’ spring training complex, admitting his use and saying the drugs came from the Dominican Republic and were provided by his cousin.

Rodriguez, who had been playing regularly this spring and receiving mixed reactions from fans, met with MLB investigators for two hours Sunday to discuss his previous drug use.

Without Rodriguez, a three-time Most Valuable Player, the Yankees could turn to Cody Ransom at third base. A 33-year-old journeyman, Ransom has just 183 career at-bats.


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Updated Sunday, Mar 8, 2009