Pitcher Kuo eager to continue MLB career despite elbow surgery

The China Post news staff

The China Post news staff–Taiwan-born pitcher with the L.A. Dodgers Hong-Chi Kuo (郭泓志), who was scheduled to undergo surgery yesterday, will have to disappoint baseball fans in Taiwan by his no-show in the Nov. 2-6 All-Star games, according to the L.A. team’s therapy specialist Stan Conte.

However, Kuo, dogged by injuries last season and said to be in no mood to play again, will not give up pro baseball, at least not next season.

It will take the left-armed pitcher six to eight weeks to recover from the surgery on his left elbow, the purpose of which was to remove a bone spur and bone splinters from it, Conte said.

The minor video-assisted surgery, however, was described as “major” by Conte. “Anything that has anything to do with Kuo’s elbow cannot be considered minor,” Conte quipped. “It will take your breath away,” he added.

Kuo was expected in Taiwan on Wednesday, but his elbow felt funny on the eve of his flight out of the United States. Conte suggested he remain stateside and have surgery there after an X-ray examination showed bone splinters remaining in his elbow.

Bros Sports Marketing, the organizer, had hoped that Kuo could return to Taiwan to make an appearance if his injury was not that serious. The company has now been forced to cancel its plans for Kuo. Kuo has a long history of forearm injuries, including two ligament injuries that had to be mended by surgical means. This would be the fifth time his elbow has come under the knife.

According to Conte, Kuo’s condition, unrelated to the problems he encountered on the mound last season, surfaced when he was getting ready for the MLB All-Star games in Taiwan. “He had been doing fine” in his preparations, Conte said.

The fifth surgery does not seem to have affected Kuo’s determination to remain in the MLB. He told me he was very interested in pitching again next year, Conte said, adding that the L.A. Lodgers might seek to renew Kuo’s contract with a lower pay package for him through “no-tender.”