Pirates rookie Nick Burdi says elbow pain was ‘a pulling, stabbing sensation’ | TribLIVE.com

Pirates rookie Nick Burdi says elbow pain was ‘a pulling, stabbing sensation’

Jerry DiPaola
Pirates reliever Nick Burdi grabs his arm after throwing a pitch during the eighth inning against the Diamondbacks Monday, April 22, 2019, at PNC Park.

A few pitches before the one that drove him to his knees, Nick Burdi felt a tweak.

But nothing like what came next.

For the first time since he hurt his arm Monday night throwing a 97 mph fastball, Burdi spoke about the injury Wednesday after the Pittsburgh Pirates’ 11-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks at PNC Park.

“It just felt like a pulling, kind of stabbing sensation throughout the bicep,” said Burdi, who immediately clutched his right biceps, sobbing.

“It was a traumatic response to a traumatic injury,” said Todd Tomczyk, the Pirates’ director of sports medicine.

“I felt something kind of tweak a few pitches previous to it,” Burdi said, “and when it went on that one pitch, I knew something was serious.”

Burdi, a 26-year-old rookie, said the only pain he has felt that was close to that occurred when he tore his ulnar collateral ligament, leading to Tommy John surgery in 2017. But he said he never feared that the new pain was related to the surgery.

“I never really even thought about my UCL,” he said. “I grabbed my bicep right away. Luckily, it wasn’t the UCL and just praying for the best now.”

Burdi, who is on the 10-day injured list, will travel with the team to Los Angeles on Thursday. Then, he’ll go to Dallas where the Pirates will play two games against the Texas Rangers, and he’ll meet and get a second opinion from Dr. Keith Meister, who is his Tommy John surgeon.

“Todd, the medical staff and I, we thought that would be the best route to go,” Burdi said, “with (Meister) doing the surgery and seeing how the elbow was previously. I feel comfortable with him, as does my family.”

Burdi said support from his teammates has helped him through the past three days.

“It means a lot, especially being new to the organization, new to the clubhouse,” he said. “It kind of shows the sense of brotherhood and family we have as a team.

“This team is going to move on with or without me. They have guys in the bullpen who are going to get the job done and pitch well. It’s frustrating, but I’m back in the clubhouse, back around the guys, just trying to move forward and get ready for whatever comes next.”

Burdi said he still feels some aches and soreness that he is treating with ice, heat and anti-inflammatory medication.

“Trying to calm it down as much as we can. Taking it one day at a time and hoping for the best.”

Burdi had a magnetic imaging angiogram Tuesday, and the preliminary diagnosis was right biceps and elbow pain.

“Before we officially announce something, we want to get the most accurate diagnosis available to us,” Tomczyk said. “That will not be established until the second opinion is had early next week.

“What’s most important is Nick has a really good head on his shoulders. He has a lot of support from his teammates, from the Pirates organization.

“He’s optimistic. He’s been through a lot. Fortunately or unfortunately, he knows of the rigors of a potential long-term rehab, which we don’t know yet (will be necessary).

“He is very emotionally and psychologically equipped to deal with whatever he’s going to be faced with.”

Love baseball? Stay up-to-date with the latest Pittsburgh Pirates news.

Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jerry by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: Sports | Pirates
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.