Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Chad Billingsley was scratched from his Sunday start due to pain in his elbow. According to the Dodgers' website, Billingsley underwent an initial MRI on Sunday, which he said showed "flexor muscle and inflammation strain or whatever you want to call it."
Jeff Gross/Getty ImagesChad Billingsley is 4-9 with a 4.30 ERA and a 1.40 WHIP this season.
Not a bad effort when it comes to an athlete relaying medical information. It sounds as if he is describing inflammation in the flexor tendon region (where the muscles that control the flexing or bending of the wrist attach at the inner elbow). Billingsley noted his arm feels better after he begins throwing and it loosens up, a pattern also consistent with mild tendinitis.
The terms he used don't matter much, though, because Billingsley was expected to undergo a second MRI on Monday in order to, as he put it, "get a little bit of a better view of it." Once those results have been reviewed, there should be further indication from the team as to next steps, including whether a trip to the DL is in order.
Billingsley did not have a sudden onset of elbow pain. Apparently, he has been having discomfort for a couple of weeks but didn't mention the issue until a Saturday bullpen session. Perhaps the most notable comment from manager Don Mattingly related to his disappointment with Billingsley for keeping his symptoms from the medical staff. Mattingly acknowledged the ongoing challenge of trying to get players to speak to medical personnel as soon as something crops up but astutely noted, "They can't really help you if you don't talk to them."