Royals third baseman Alex Gordon speaks to the drudgery of rehab work in recounting what he terms “a funny story” about throwing up all over an exercise bike when told to exercise his right hip just a few hours after surgery.
“I thought it was kind of crazy,” he said, “that a couple of hours after surgery, they put me on the bike. They wanted to get my leg moving because it helps the healing process if you just move it around a little bit and get the blood flowing.
“I was on a lot of drugs (at the time). I think that’s why I threw up.”
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Then again, spend roughly four hours a day on a cycle and other numbing routines and any diversion is welcome.
Gordon rejoined his teammates Monday -- 17 days after undergoing surgery in Vail, Colo., to repair a labral tear on his right hip. He actually returned Friday, but the Royals were spending the weekend in Minnesota.
At least now, he finds it easier to track follow the action.
“Out in Vail,” Gordon said, “I was getting (the games) over the Internet. I couldn’t really see it. I was just getting the box score. But I had nothing else to do, so I just kind of sat on the computer and (watched) pitch by pitch what was going on.
“Coming home and seeing them on TV was kind of hard. Not being able to be out there and helping them. It’s tough, but it’s good to see that they’re playing well. That makes it a lot easier.”
There remains no firm timetable for Gordon’s return to active duty, although club officials privately point to the All-Star break in mid-July.
Gordon expects to begin throwing by the end of next week. He can tentatively begin taking light swings a week later. By late May, six weeks after surgery, Gordon is scheduled for a follow-up exam in Vail.
“After that,” he said, “it’s just how I respond to the tests and we go from there.”
Gordon still isn’t sure how the injury occurred except that he felt tightness in his hip on opening day in Chicago.
“We were standing around for introductions before the first pitch,” he said. “It kind of felt a little tight. Then when I hit my home run, I could kind of feel it as I was going around the bases.
“After that, it just kept getting worse and worse.”
Gordon left the April 11 game against the Yankees after the hip pain accelerated while running out a double-play grounder. He missed the next two games before returning April 14-15 for games against Cleveland.
Increased pain led to a further examination that revealed the cartilage tear and the April 16 decision to place him on the disabled list. Marc Philippon performed surgery to repair the tear the following day in Vail.
Two hours later, Gordon was on a bike. Funny story about that.