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Detwiler out 3 months with hip injury

Feb 18, 2010, 8:31 PM EST

[UPDATE AT 4:28 P.M. — The Nats have now confirmed Detwiler’s surgery and say he is scheduled to begin a throwing program in six weeks and “should be able to return to competitive pitching in three months.” The procedure was performed Monday in Vail, Colo., by Marc J. Phillippon.]

VIERA, Fla. — Ross Detwiler, who hoped to make the Nationals’ Opening Day rotation on the heels of a strong September in the big leagues, won’t get a chance to make any kind of showing for a while.

Detwiler had surgery Monday to repair a torn hip flexor and will miss about 10 weeks, according to a source close to the left-hander. The injury occurred sometime during the last month while the former first-round draft pick was working out in Viera.

Detwiler, who turns 24 on March 6, is expected to return to the Nats’ spring training complex, using crutches, on Saturday.

The injury is a significant blow, both to Detwiler and to the Nationals. Detwiler, the sixth overall pick in the 2007 draft out of Missouri State, made major strides last season and posted a 3.05 ERA in 16 starts between Class AA Harrisburg and Class AAA Syracuse. He looked overwhelmed during his first stint in Washington, going 0-5 with a 6.40 ERA in 10 starts to earn a demotion to Syracuse. But upon returning to the majors in September, he posted a 1.90 ERA in five appearances (four starts) to head into the offseason on a high note.

The Nats, who are searching for three starters to join John Lannan and Jason Marquis in the Opening Day rotation, were hoping Detwiler could pick up where he left off late last season and push for a spot this spring. Now they’ll be forced to turn their attention to several other young hurlers in the mix, including Scott Olsen, Craig Stammen, Garrett Mock, Shairon Martis, Matt Chico, Collin Balester and J.D. Martin.

  1. peric - Feb 18, 2010 at 8:40 PM

    Wow, that adds yet another starting pitcher to the rehab/recovery list. It seems to grow ever longer …

  2. Anonymous - Feb 18, 2010 at 8:50 PM

    If this is the kind of news you're going to bring us, I want my money back!

  3. Steve M. - Feb 18, 2010 at 8:51 PM

    Great job breaking that bad news. Can't believe he had surgery on Monday and no other news person picked that up!Luckily there is good depth for the 4th and 5th spot in the rotation.

  4. Anonymous - Feb 18, 2010 at 8:52 PM

    Mark: Is Josh Wilkie at ST? If so, do you think he has a shot at making the roster?Tony.

  5. JayB - Feb 18, 2010 at 8:52 PM

    Man that is bad news…..reported first by a guy who just rolled into town a hour ago….ABM you look like a dope again…just like you did not Milledge will not be traded lines….Mark, can you find out if he was being suppervised when he was hurt and what was he doing?

  6. natsfan1a - Feb 18, 2010 at 8:53 PM

    Sigh. I agree with Steve, though – good job breaking the bad news. One would think that someone who was already on the scene might have done so before today. Guess that's what we pay Mark the big bucks for. 😉

  7. natsstats - Feb 18, 2010 at 8:55 PM

    That's why we need you down there. How can the Post/MASN completely miss that?

  8. jcj5y - Feb 18, 2010 at 9:05 PM

    Very disappointing news. I had thought that Detwiler would be a favorite for a spot in the rotation. I guess this is the reason for signing players like James and Batista. I feel like the Nats are no longer one injury away from disaster.

  9. Sunderland - Feb 18, 2010 at 9:17 PM

    Thanks Mark – How is it that this was kept under the covers for 3 days? Surgery Monday, news Thursday? Strange.

  10. JMW4th - Feb 18, 2010 at 9:20 PM

    why did nobody that was already there write about this?The Post had a guy down there in Viera on Monday, WTF was he doing?why does it take Zuckerman going down there on his own to get important news to us?

  11. Section 222 - Feb 18, 2010 at 9:33 PM

    Kudos on scooping the Post, MASN, Ladsen, and Nats320. I'm sure your loyal followers would love to hear the backstory on how you got this information that seems to have eluded everyone else who was down there on the day of and the day after the surgery.

  12. Anonymous - Feb 18, 2010 at 9:49 PM

    MASN even quoted Mark!! YAY!Mark – do you think this will trigger another Nat minor leaguer invitee to camp or signing a someone to a minor league contract and inviting them to camp?

  13. peric - Feb 18, 2010 at 9:51 PM

    Perhaps, just perhaps this was done to help Mark out? To launch his ship? Noting that he did dawdle a bit about getting down there … ~laughing~ the dearth of posts on the NFA seems to perhaps point that direction as well?

  14. Farid - Feb 18, 2010 at 10:18 PM

    This is a punch in the gut just like 2006 when Brian Lawrence went down on the first day of Spring Training. At least he was not the only option the team was looking at for that rotation spot.

  15. NatsNut - Feb 18, 2010 at 10:31 PM

    "Mark: Is Josh Wilkie at ST? If so, do you think he has a shot at making the roster? Tony"Excellent question. I'd also like to know.

  16. Anonymous - Feb 18, 2010 at 10:32 PM

    So, this is why Rizzo signed all these xtra arms. This kind of thing always happens. I was really hoping for an odd year of few injuries, apparently, so far, not to be. JT in SC Good work Mark on the scoop, even if it is bad.

  17. Stuart - Feb 18, 2010 at 10:36 PM

    If you'd stopped at South of the Border, you'd have missed the scoop …

  18. Anonymous - Feb 18, 2010 at 10:37 PM

    Tough break for Detwiler, But one man's setback is another man's opportunity; Somebody like Chico might get a longer look against Olsen for a 2nd LH in the rotation as a result.

  19. peric - Feb 18, 2010 at 10:44 PM

    Besides Chico, there's Thompson, Olsen, and Severino right now on the left hand side.

  20. Positively Half St. - Feb 18, 2010 at 11:26 PM

    Jarrod Washburn is still unsigned.

  21. JayB - Feb 18, 2010 at 11:31 PM

    Hey Mark,Check out what Steven has linked to at FJB about Brain B on XM today… that sounds like one pissed off Nat. Bet you could get some good quotes from him…Ask Rizzo if losing the heart of a new BP guy was worth it?

  22. natscan reduxit - Feb 18, 2010 at 11:54 PM

    … my 'Yankees fan' office neighbour tells me that Bruney was a starter when he came up with NYC. Anyone recall that? he suggests the Nats could use him as a spot starter if need be.

  23. Anonymous - Feb 19, 2010 at 12:16 AM

    I see Ladson was right on the DetWiler story at 5:43pm. Only 2 hours after Mark.I THINK MARK ZUCKERMAN DESERVES A RAISE!!!!!!!!!Signed Mrs. Zuckerman (just kidding)

  24. JMW4th - Feb 19, 2010 at 2:30 AM

    Jarrod Washburn is still unsigned.—————–for good reason.

  25. Section 109 - Feb 19, 2010 at 2:35 AM

    Really sorry to hear this. Must be really disheartening for Detwiler, who is a sweetheart. Thank you Mark for ferreting out the news and giving us good context. Well, three months, could be worse. Hang in there Ross.

  26. Hondo - Feb 19, 2010 at 2:46 AM

    Nice.I'm glad I kicked in few bucks for a real pair of eyes and ears down there.

  27. SonnyG10 - Feb 19, 2010 at 3:49 AM

    Nice going Mark. I'm also glad I contributed for quality info.

  28. natbiscuit - Feb 19, 2010 at 4:22 AM

    Mark, Bruney seems to be quite upset by the arbitration process. It would be interesting to know if he is going to allow himself to be poisoned by the process. It seems odd that his comments to date indicate surprise and disappointment. I thought it was well understood that both sides would make their strongest case to win and that players should be prepared. Did he expect that the team would soft pedal their case? His assertion that his purpose was somehow noble pioneering for future MLB players seems equally odd. Andy Messersmith and Dave McNally he's not. What's up with this guy?

  29. JMW4th - Feb 19, 2010 at 4:39 AM

    If you donated to the cause, check your emails.

  30. NattyLite - Feb 19, 2010 at 5:31 AM

    joel hanahanrananran has shawn hill syndrome…pain and inflammation in the elbow, no time table for his return…

  31. sbrent - Feb 19, 2010 at 5:42 AM

    Why does the player always have to sit in on the arbitration hearing? Seems unnecessary and unpleasant. Why not just let the agents sit in for them. That said, it seems childish for players to take what's said there so personally. You're getting a truckload of money, and you work for a corporation that has to think of you in dollars and cents terms. It's not like being waterboarded for pete's sake.

  32. NattyLite - Feb 19, 2010 at 7:51 AM

    mark, classy email and podcast/audio file. i think the past year and a half we have forgotten what hardworking, intelligent journalism looks like. thanks for bringing it back and giving us an actual window into the nats

  33. Positively Half St. - Feb 19, 2010 at 12:25 PM

    We have many cynics in our crowd, who are generally very entertaining. However, I offer this from a Baseball Prospectus chat yesterday as a ray of sunshine:Kyran (Boulder, CO): Who's your surprise team – in a good or bad way – in MLB this year?Kevin Goldstein: Good: Washington. Not in a oh my god they won 85 games way or anything, just in that they won't be a joke. Bad: Cubs — I just think that window has closed, and it's a roster filled with players on the downswing.It isn't quite as good as Goldstein saying the Nats will make the playoffs, but it sure is nice for the team to get a little respect.

  34. Andrew - Feb 19, 2010 at 1:15 PM

    Real good stuff by Natsbuscuit and Positively.This is turning into the "go to" site for Nats news and discussion.Mark's audio file was excellent!

  35. An Briosca Mor - Feb 19, 2010 at 2:00 PM

    Cubs — I just think that window has closed, and it's a roster filled with players on the downswing.A group led by one Soriano, A – who has, what, five more years left on that contract? How's that decision not to outbid the Cubs for him looking now?

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As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at Click here for past audio clips.

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