ST. LOUIS (AP) – The best-case scenario for Lance Berkman is that he returns to the St. Louis Cardinals’ lineup after the All-Star break. The 36-year-old first baseman is prepared for news on his injured right knee that’s not so rosy.
General manager John Mozeliak said Monday that Berkman will be sidelined at least six to eight weeks with significant cartilage damage on both sides of the knee, but an MRI did not appear to show ligament damage. Because he was hurt making a routine play, Berkman suspects a ligament injury that would require more significant surgery and end his season – and perhaps his career.
Berkman will undergo an arthroscopic procedure later this week in Vail, Colo.
“At a minimum, it’s a scope to repair it,” Mozeliak said. “We’re hopeful, we’re optimistic that’s what it is. But we’ll need a few days before we determine anything. Certainly, he knows there are uncertain times ahead of him.”
Berkman spoke with reporters after crossing the clubhouse on crutches.
“We can all agree you shouldn’t get hurt just stretching for a ball at first base,” he said. “Fearful is the wrong word, but I’m certainly concerned – not just what the injury is but why did it happen?
“It’s pretty simple: Best-case scenario, it’s probably after the All-Star break, worst-case scenario is I’m done for the year.”