The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine

MLB News: Rockies’ Jordan Lyles Out For Season With Toe Injury

Posted by on Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

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With fifth place standings in the West, it doesn’t look like the Colorado Rockies will be in the post-season competition. However, it’s unfortunate to see pitcher Jordan Lyles curbing his season early with a serious toe injury requiring surgery, especially since he’s just been granted a nice $2 million raise in arbitration, up from the $500,000 league minimum. Last June, he broke his left middle finger bone, just above the knuckle, when a player slid into his gloved hand and missed 54 games. So you could say it’s been a rocky road of unfulfilled potential since leaving the Houston Astros and signing with the Rockies in 2014.

jordan lyles
With a broken hand and a toe injury, Jordan Lyles has had a rocky road with the Colorado Rockies! Image Source: Wikimedia.org

What Happened To Jordan Lyles’ Toe?

According to The Denver Post“Bad news continues to rain on the Rockies. After enduring a two-hour, 15-minute rain delay in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader at Coors Field, right-hander Jordan Lyles mowed down the Giants for three innings. But misfortune struck with two out in the fourth inning when Lyles landed wrong on his left foot after delivering a pitch to Hunter Pence.” He was evaluated and stayed in the May 23rd game until the fifth inning, when he hit Joe Panik with an errant pitch.

Despite the toe injury, he started the next two games with a taped-up toe — and left early each time. “I was trying to hold off the inevitable,” he told his local newspaper. “They didn’t think I’d be able to handle the pain. But being a hard-head, I said, ‘Well, let’s see about that.'” Finally, he was pulled after the third post-injury start, in the second inning against the Philadelphia Phillies on May 31st, when he over-extended his toe joint and aggravated the injury.

An evaluation delivered the news that he would need season-ending surgery to repair the medial collateral ligament and capsule in his left toe. “The type of injury Jordan Lyles suffered is similar to the common ‘turf toe’ injury we treat in football players,” explains Dr. Ryan Minara from The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine in NYC. “The connective tissue in the great toe joint are formed in a capsule leading from the first metatarsal head of the foot to the distal phalax of the toe, which provides stability on the inside of the toe and keeps it in proper alignment. When the collateral ligaments are torn, the toe can drift toward the outside of the foot, which we see with bunion deformities. Surgical intervention is necessary for the more severe grade III sprains — to prevent hallux valgus deformity and other issues with strength or function.”

Tommy John Surgery

On June 10th, Jordan Lyles underwent a procedure called “Tommy John Surgery” — or, in more technical terms, “Collateral Ligament Reconstruction.” The surgery was named after an LA Dodgers player who was the first to have the revolutionary reconstruction done in 1974. When it seemed he may never pitch again, John agreed to have Dr. Frank Jobe transfer tendons from his right forearm to his left elbow. His recovery was considered “miraculous” and he went on to pitch until 1989 with 168 wins. While Tommy John surgery is most commonly associated with the elbow, it can also be done to repair toe ligaments, creating a graft from other ligaments elsewhere in the foot. Players need to stay off their feet for two months and ambulate using crutches (or a hands-free crutch) for two additional months. Not surprisingly, recovery is said to take at least six months to a year. On the bright side, 85 to 90 percent of players do see a full recovery and go on to have productive careers after surgery. As with any foot surgery, residual pain and arthritis are possible complications.

Toe Surgery in NYC

The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine is a top destination for toe surgery in NYC. We specialize in the most progressive treatments designed to get players back to the game as quickly and efficiently as we can. Our board-certified surgeons have done more than 10,000 successful procedures over the past three decades, so you are in good hands with us! Contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment.

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If you have any foot problems or pain, contact The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports MedicineDr. Josef J. GeldwertDr. Katherine Lai, Dr. Ryan Minara and Dr. Mariola Rivera have helped thousands of people get back on their feet. Unfortunately, we cannot give diagnoses or treatment advice online. Please make an appointment to see us if you live in the NY metropolitan area or seek out a podiatrist in your area.