Ian Stewarts Hints Towards Surgery, Being Out For A Long Time


May 13, 2012; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Chicago Cubs third baseman Ian Stewart (2) hits a home run off Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Marco Estrada (not pictured) in the fifth inning at Miller Park. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-US PRESSWIRE

If Chicago Cubs fans are going to give Ian Stewart one thing, it may be for the third baseman’s openness and willingness to interact with the Cubs fans.

When the Cubs acquired Stewart from the Colorado Rockies this past season, the team knew they were acquiring a player in Stewart that hit under .200 last season with only one home run. In addition, Stewart was faced with a wrist injury that plagued him for most of the 2011 season. However, Cubs’ president Theo Epstein promised that Stewart would not hindered by his ailing wrist in the 2012 season, and the third baseman should mirror the power input that he had earlier in his career.

Stewart has shown more power this season, but he has struggled considerably. In 55 games, Stewart is hitting .201/.292/.335 to go along with 5 home runs and 17 RBIs for the Cubs this season. Stewart, though, has not played in game since June 14. That is the date that Stewart was placed on the disabled list because of his ailing wrist.

Stewart admitted during the early days of the 2012 season that his wrist is something that would keep him out of games from time to time. However, it is looking like Stewart has reached a point where surgery is only option remaining.

Stewart is a very active tweeter. Usually when I wake up in the morning, my timeline is filled with Stewart’s tweets in response to fans. Last night, a couple of Cubs fans asked for an update from Stewart regarding his status. One fan asked Stewart when he would return to the Cubs’ lineup and the third baseman replied by saying not for a long-time. Another fan tweeted to Stewart and said that surgery may be the best option for Stewart as that may finally solve all his problems with his wrist, Stewart retweeted that tweet to his followers.

Stewart’s tweets and retweets would fall in line with the story that Doug Padilla posted yesterday on ESPN Chicago. Padilla wrote that wrist surgery is looking like a likely possibility for the Cubs’ third baseman. Stewart has take cortisone shot after cortisone shot and there has been no progress made. Meaning the next option would be surgery, something that Stewart has been able to delay as doctors have found nothing wrong when they examined his wrist. Though, in Stewart’s latest trip to the doctor after being placed on the disabled list by the Cubs, calcium deposits were found that might be causing possible damage to Stewart’s nerve.

Cubs’ manager Dale Sveum alluded that the Cubs may be making a decision on Stewart within the near future.

"“We’re probably going to have to make that decision [on surgery] pretty soon just for the fact that there is no progress going on,” manager Dale Sveum said. ESPN Chicago"

Cubs’ general manager Jed Hoyer also hinted that surgery is likely in Stewart’s future.

"“Yeah, I think it’s a strong likelihood is a strong way to characterize it,” general manager Jed Hoyer said of the surgery route. “He may be able to avoid it but to this point we have tried to exhaust every option to avoid it and it may well end up with surgery. It’s been frustrating for Ian and frustrating for us.” ESPN Chicago"

Surgery may not be a bad option for Stewart or the Cubs. As Stewart alluded to on twitter last night, surgery may finally solve the problems with Stewart’s ailing wrist. As for the Cubs, it gives the team a chance to look at different players for the third base position. Not that he is a long-term solution at third base or anything, but Luis Valbuena has impressed while playing third base in place of Stewart. Valbuena is only hitting .220 with the Cubs, but the 26 year old journeyman has 3 home runs for the Cubs in his 15 games played for the team this season. Josh Vitters, who was just named to the PCL All-Star team as a reserve, is also an option but that is a road that the Cubs will cross later on in their season.

Though, one would have to wonder if Ian Stewart is a one and done player for the Cubs.