TORONTO — Casey Janssen fully expects to be ready for spring training after undergoing minor shoulder surgery earlier this month to alleviate the discomfort he pitched through most of last season.
The Toronto Blue Jays revealed the news about their closer Tuesday — nearly two weeks following the Nov. 16 procedure — and in an interview the right-hander said he received a cortisone shot during the all-star break to help him finish the campaign.
When rest didn’t end his troubles, Janssen underwent something called the Mumford Procedure — shaving down the small end of the clavicle to ease soreness — along with a general cleanup of the shoulder.
“I tried to get through it as best I could, I had some medicine help to get me through some of the tougher times, and hoped at the end of the season it would all go away,” said Janssen. “Then at the end of the season, after about four or five weeks, I started to get active again and it came right back, so (surgery) was the next step.”
Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who last year repaired Canadian MMA star Georges St. Pierre’s knee, performed the surgery on Janssen and told him that he should be fine to start his throwing program in early January as usual.
That should have Janssen — 1-1 with a career-high 22 saves, a 2.54 ERA and 0.864 WHIP over 63.2 innings — ready in time for the beginning of camp.
“I’m definitely planning on it,” said Janssen “You don’t want to get too far ahead of yourself because it’s still a little ways away, but I would be shocked if I wasn’t ready to go. …
“I’m treating this like an oil change. I had a procedure five years ago, sometimes scar tissue builds up, they cleaned it out and I’m ready to get back out on the road again.”
Janssen missed all of 2008 after surgery to repair a torn labrum but described the pain he felt then in comparison to his soreness last season as “worlds apart.”
Though he felt it on the mound, it didn’t hinder the 31-year-old from the best season of his career.
“I was in a little bit of discomfort,” Janssen said, “but with adrenaline and fans in the seats and just being in the big-leagues, that’s motivation enough to get through the hard times physically.”
Janssen assumed the closer’s role in May after Francisco Cordero faltered in place of Sergio Santos, who also ended up having shoulder surgery.
Santos is also expected to be ready for spring training.