Oakland Athletics catcher Stephen Vogt Sidelined 4-6 Weeks After Elbow Surgery
Stephen Vogt underwent successful arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow Friday, and he is likely to miss 4-6 weeks as he recovers. According to Oakland Athletics beat writer Jane Lee, the veteran backstop is fully expected to be ready by Opening Day, as stated by the organization in a press release.
Given that timeline, Vogt presumably would begin baseball activity at the end of February at the earliest, but no later than the middle of March. It’s unfortunate timing, considering the fact that pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to their first Spring Training workout in Arizona on February 21. However, the trade speculations surrounding the A’s and Milwaukee Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy make complete sense now — if for some reason Vogt experiences a major setback in his recovery, the veteran backstop would have been a nice replacement.
Lee also notes that the procedure was performed at Presidio Surgical Center in San Francisco, by Dr. Jon Dickinson. During the operation, Dr. Dickinson removed a bone chip and conducted a debridement of the elbow joint – which is simply discarding any dead or damaged tissue in the elbow, to increase the chances of healing well.
A’s general manager David Forst, along with Vogt, determined that now was the best time to undergo arthroscopic elbow surgery without jeopardizing the 31-year-old’s 2016 campaign.
According to CSN California’s Joe Stiglich via Twitter, Vogt didn’t start feeling any discomfort until the New Year rolled around, but it’s not something the organization should be extremely considered about:
Last offseason, Vogt had a procedure on a nagging foot injury that resulted in fewer appearances behind the plate, on top of several concussion scares. The Visalia, California native saw more starts at first base, designated hitter, and even left field, just to get his bat in the lineup.
On the depth chart, the A’s have few options behind Josh Phegley, should things not go as planned for Vogt. Minor league catchers include Carson Blair, Bruce Maxwell, and new acquisition Matt McBride — who has primarily played in the outfield for the majority of his big league career.