New York – Another hip surgery.
Those are words the New York Yankees and Alex Rodriguez never wanted to hear again after the star slugger underwent his first surgery in March 2009.
The All-Star third baseman bounced back from that one, blasting 30 homers and driving in 100 runs after missing the first month of the season. And again he let his bat do the talking with one of the best post-seasons in baseball, hitting .365 with six homers and 18 RBIs that October to help lead the Yankees to a World Series championship.
But after this past October, with A-Rod’s post-season performance sinking to a new low --as Joe Girardi finally chose to pinch-hit for the slumping slugger after he went 3 for 25 with 12 strikeouts-- we all thought that the best days were behind him.
Fans wanted him out and there was even rumored talk of the Yankees and Marlins dancing together, sending A-Rod down to Miami, ridding themselves of the $114 million Rodriguez is due over the next five seasons.
But news of A-Rod's left hip surgery in January all but means there's no divorce to this marriage, one of the craziest contracts in sports history, unless Rodriguez walks away for good.
Instead of worrying about being hit for or benched, A-Rod and the Yanks will have to just wait and see how he'll bounce back from this one.
A-Rod and the Yankees brain trust were asked during his post-season struggles if he was hurt, swiftly replying that the 37-year-old was just in a slump and that he would break out of it.
What we didn't know was that after Raul Ibanez homered, pinch-hitting for A-Rod in Game 3 of the ALDS, Rodriguez told the Yankees that he was dealing with pain in his right hip although an MRI would reveal no damage.
Standing in the clubhouse near Derek Jeter's locker that night, A-Rod told reporters "I wish I could go up there every time and just do some serious damage 'cause I really want to ..."
Now we'll have to wait and see if he will be able to do just that if and when he does step up to the plate.
Medicine can do wonders but with A-Rod’s 38th birthday in July it’s doubtful he can make a full recovery. We're talking about a hip surgery and all of the torque that goes into putting a good swing on a ball. The surgery will take place in January because he will need about four to six weeks to just strengthen it before doctors go in to repair a torn labrum, bone impingement and a cyst, making that first surgery pale in comparison to this one.
While everything worked out smooth the first time around with the right hip, the chances of the left hip being affected were very likely.
"Basically once you have to have surgery on one joint, all the other joints may be affected because even if the surgery went perfectly, there is no way to exactly replicate the natural balance and structure of the body. All the joints work together for normal movement," Dr. Imani Jackson-Rosario of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey told Fox News Latino.
"Surgery on one hip can affect the function on the rest of the joints, including the other hip. But sports place strain on the body due to repetitive motions and movements that we may not be naturally designed for. And once there is any injury to a joint, the body is never exactly the same."
A-Rod's right knee and left shoulder problems have limited his presence in the Yankees lineup for some time. With just 16 and 18 home runs during the last two seasons, respectively, his power production has slipped off tremendously as he insists he can get back on track.
But now with a pair of hip surgeries in almost four years, it may be time to count this perfectionist out for good.
Adry Torres, who has covered MLB, NFL, NBA and NCAA basketball games and related events, is a regular contributor to Fox News Latino. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter: @adrytorresnyc