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Don’t Expect Holland Back On Field As Soon As He Hopes

By Jeff Cavanaugh | 105.3 The Fan
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(Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

(Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

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DALLAS (105.3 THE FAN) — The Rangers website says that starter Derek Holland had surgery on Friday to repair torn cartilage in his left knee.

From his own mouth on the Ben & Skin show, Holland referred to the procedure as “microfracture”. That word is a game changer.

That isn’t repairing cartilage, it is essentially replacing it. Microfracture means there is damaged/missing cartilage in Holland’s knee, they poke small holes in the bone to encourage it to bleed, and eventually reform a version of said cartilage.

As a savvy veteran of two microfracture surgeries on the knee, I can tell you this: For six weeks you can’t put pressure on it. Just range of motion work. After that, you have to deal with muscle atrophy from not having used that leg. It’s generally considered a 4-6 month recovery at BEST. That amount of time is to get the knee right. After that Holland will still have to get his arm ready to pitch in the major leagues. That doesn’t happen overnight.

Here’s a reference point for a Texas Rangers pitcher having microfracture surgery on a knee. Scott Feldman was shut down on August 23, 2010 with what the Rangers thought was a knee bruise. When he was finally operated on in early November, it was microfracture surgery that was required.

The first game he appeared in after that for the Rangers was July 22, 2011. That’s about eight and a half months from surgery to pitching in the bigs. Be prepared for that.

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