Cardinals righthander Kyle Lohse likely will need surgery to repair a rare forearm condition, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
A specialist diagnosed Lohse as having extreme compartment syndrome, a condition in which the sheath covering a muscle in the pitcher’s forearm fails to allow it to expand.
No other major league pitcher is known to have suffered from the condition, which usually is associated with distance runners and motocross riders. In those cases, the recovering time from surgery is usually around seven weeks. However, the surgery could sideline Lohse anywhere from two months to the rest of the season, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Lohse’s alternative would be to convert to a reliever so he would be required to throw fewer pitches.
The newspaper speculated that the Cardinals will explore trade and free-agent options to replace Lohse in the rotation.
Lohse, whose forearm problems date back to last May, is 1-4 with a 5.89 ERA in nine starts this season.