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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As he walked through the Phillies dugout, you could instantly tell there was something still visibly wrong with Roy Oswalt. The Phillies right-handed pitcher’s steps came with a strained stiff-legged gait as he wended his way through a throng of media to address the lower back issues that placed him on the 15-day disabled list Friday afternoon.
First, Phillies’ doctor Michael Ciccotti spoke to the media and said Oswalt could be back, with injections anywhere from three-to-five weeks. Dr. Ciccotti said Oswalt suffers from “some minor lower lumbar spine inflammation” that he’s endured in the past. So far this year, Oswalt has had increased symptoms.
Oswalt underwent an MRI on Friday at Jefferson Hospital, which revealed minor bulging of the disk, which according to Ciccotti, is typical in pitchers. It can be addressed with rest, medication and injections.
Oswalt did say he felt better than he did Wednesday, before he had his worst game of the season, giving up four runs on five hits over two innings. This season, Oswalt is 4-6 with a 3.79 ERA in 13 starts.
“I was worried, because the pain was going down my leg,” Oswalt said. “In the past, the pain has been in the hip. More than anything, the biggest thing for me is between starts, I can’t get ready for anything. That’s what’s happening more than anything else. The Phillies brought me over to win, and I’ve felt I haven’t given too much to the team in the winning aspect of it.”
Oswalt is hoping to be back at 100-percent sometime later this season, but one thing he wanted to dispel is any notion that he’s going to retire.
“I didn’t say I was going to retire, and someone blew that way out of proportion,” Oswalt said. “I lost some weight, around six pounds. But [because of the lower-back injury], I can’t do my routine [between starts] like I normally do. I’ve been dealing with this for a while now.”
Reported by Joseph Santoliquito