Andy Roddick has a 9-9 career record at the French Open. He's made it past the second round just three times. In 20 career Masters 1000 events on clay, Roddick has never made a final and only advanced to the semifinals twice. This year he was 0-2 on the surface, including a three-set loss to the 160th-ranked player in the world. Roddick hadn't lost a match to a player ranked lower in seven years.
So even if the American could have played in this year's tournament at Roland Garros, even if the shoulder injury he suffered last week in Rome had healed enough where he could have given it a try, he made the right decision in withdrawing from the event. A full-strength Andy Roddick never does much on the red clay of Paris. There was no reason to find out how an injured one would perform.
That's not to say Roddick could have played the French; he hasn't discussed the extent of his injury since taking heat for withdrawing from the doubles final in Rome because of shoulder pain. But if he was on the fence, the clay may have pushed him toward a decision, especially with two big events looming in the coming weeks.
Wimbledon, of course, begins 15 days after the French. Five days after that, on the weekend of July 8, Roddick is scheduled to play a Davis Cup quarterfinal tie in his hometown of Austin, Texas. The Americans will face off against Rafael Nadal and Spain.
His favorite major followed by a Davis Cup in his own backyard? If the decision to withdraw from the French Open was a difficult one, it had to go down easier knowing what's in store this summer.