Monday, February 21, 2011
Westmoreland showing progress
By Joe McDonald
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- It’s been almost one year since Red Sox prospect Ryan Westmoreland underwent surgery on March 16 to remove a cavernous malformation on his brain stem.
His recovery is nothing short of miraculous, and the 20-year-old outfielder is back at spring training and has been taking on-field batting practice the last few days. He says he feels good.
“Doctors didn’t think I would be able to take BP this early,” he said Monday afternoon.
The Portsmouth, R.I., native is scheduled to travel to Boston for an examination on Tuesday with the team’s neurologist at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. He’ll be back in camp later this week.
He was diagnosed with the malformation after experiencing headaches and numbness during spring training last year. He left Boston's minor league camp on March 4 and was examined at Massachusetts General Hospital the next day. After consultations with three specialists, the decision was made to have the surgery, which was performed by Robert Spetzler in Arizona.
The Red Sox selected Westmoreland in the fifth round of the 2008 draft. Last summer, Westmoreland attended a few Red Sox games at Fenway Park, and said his goal was to play at Double-A Portland in 2011. He's still considered a player on rehab at this point, but if there's one person who can accomplish that goal, it's definitely Westmoreland.