Lonnie Chisenhall made an early departure from the Indians’ contest with the Royals on April 7th. It was revealed postgame that Chisenhall had re-injured his right calf muscle and following MRI was diagnosed with a right calf strain.
The question now becomes, with his history of calf injuries, is there cause for concern for Chisenhall’s long-term ability to remain healthy?
Let’s take a moment to review his history of this injury.
Initial calf strain: July 9, 2017
· Disabled list
First re-aggravation: March 17, 2018
· Scratched from the lineup with calf tightness
Second re-aggravation: April 7, 2018
· Disabled list, the team anticipates a 6-week return to play (RTP) time.
There is always increased concern for recurrence of soft tissue injuries. Soft tissue injuries typically refer to injuries to muscles in the form of muscle strains. The level of concern is dependent on the severity of the previous injury.
Chisenhall had trouble returning from his calf injury last season, as he spent seven weeks on the disabled list. Considering the timetable, the team has provided, this stint on the DL appears it will be of similar duration to last year. A six-week RTP timetable is indicative of a grade two muscle strain which involves partial tearing of the muscle, conservative management via rest and rehab will usually suffice.
Looking ahead, expect the team to be ultra conservative with returning Chisenhall to the field of play. He now has a history of his calf strain injury and is at risk for recurrence of the injury as 2018 moves forward. Can he come back and contribute at a high level for this ball club? Yes. However, this is all pending his calf holds up this season and doesn’t cause him additional trouble. I have moderate concern for Chisenhall’s calf injury recurring over the course of 2018.
I will continue to monitor the status of Lonnie Chisenhall as he progresses through the rehab process and will provide the most up to date injury analysis and breakdown as new information becomes available.
Brandon Bowers, PT, DPT, is a graduate of the University of Toledo, Doctor of Physical Therapy Program and currently practices in Columbus, Ohio. He is an avid Cleveland sports fan and has experience rehabbing athletes of all levels and from a variety of sports. Follow Brandon on Twitter for more Cleveland Indians injury insight and analysis: