3/6 Guzman out with torn ligament

Angel Guzman has a significant tear in a ligament in his right shoulder and will not be ready Opening Day. Whether he’ll undergo surgery is yet to be determined.

“He has a very unstable shoulder,” GM Jim Hendry said Saturday. “There’s no timeframe of anywhere soon that he’ll be pitching. Obviously, it wasn’t good news.”

It’s been a difficult few months for Guzman, who injured his right knee running in Venezuela then lost his brother five days later when he was shot to death in Caracas on Jan. 11. Guzman had yet to throw off the mound this spring.

“You just feel terrible for the kid,” Hendry said. “Right when he has success and has great stuff, something has gone wrong. We were very pleased with his throwing in January. It’s a shame.

“At one time, this guy was as good a prospect as [Carlos Zambrano] in the system,” Hendry said of Guzman, 28, whose career has been slowed by shoulder and elbow injuries. “It just seems like it’s been one thing after another. He’s had some success the last couple years with well above average stuff and was capable of pitching at any point in the game for you.”

Guzman is trying to decide his options. The surgical approach is unpredictable. Guzman could take a more conservative route of treatment to strengthen the shoulder, and that would require four to six weeks of exercises. Then, he’d have to start all over again.

This injury is related to the soreness he had at the end of last season near his right armpit, which prompted the Cubs to shut Guzman down Sept. 22.

Guzman was projected to handle late inning relief this season and was a candidate for the set-up job. Last year was his best as he appeared in a career high 55 games, compiling a 2.95 ERA.

– Carrie Muskat

2 Comments

That really sucks for Angel and for the Cubs as great things were expected of him. We’ll just hope that he can do something that’ll allow him to make it back for a majority of the season and to have a successful career as a reliever for the Cubs.

as ronnie santo would say: ah, jeez. really adds insult to injury after the tragedy he suffered this winter. i wish the guy the best because when he’s healthy, i love to see him in our pen. he’s got great stuff and it’s just sad to see a guy struggle with injury like he has. i’m pulling for you, guzzy!

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