SEATTLE — At least now, Mariners lefty reliever Charlie Furbush has the peace of mind of knowing why his arm wasn’t responding as expected to rest and treatment.
He has a slight tear in his rotation cuff.
"Honestly, when I heard the news," Furbush said, "it doesn’t feel that bad. It’s a little piece of mind for me, and the training staff as well, just to know what’s going on there."
Manager Lloyd McClendon said it’s "highly unlikely" that Furbush, 29, will pitch again this season. Furbush was diagnosed with biceps tendinitis after a July 7 appearance against Detroit.
Furbush’s slow recovery prompted another an examination earlier this week by Dr. Edward Khalfayan, the club’s medical director. A magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) exam revealed the tear.
"It wasn’t a big tear," Furbush said. "It wasn’t a full tear. He just said a slight tear in the rotator cuff. For me, it was like, `All right, that’s what I’ve got to deal with.’"
Furbush is scheduled to get a second opinion on his injury from Dr. David Altchek, a specialist in New York who also serves as the Mets’ medical director.
"We came to the conclusion that we’re going to wait for the second opinion," Furbush said, "and then figure out a game plan. They didn’t recommend surgery. So that’s a good thing."
Furbush said he expects a plan to be in place by early next week.
"All options are on the table at this point," he said. "We’re just going to see what gets diagnosed. We’ll just take it a day at a time. We’re trying not to look too far ahead."
Furbush was enjoying his finest season prior to the injury; he was 1-1 with a 2.08 ERA in 33 games and had stranded all 16 of his inherited runners.