Wilson has fluid drained from elbow

Wilson has fluid drained from elbow

OAKLAND -- Angels left-hander C.J. Wilson has had all sorts of surgical procedures on his left elbow, from Tommy John surgery in 2003 to the removal of bone spurs in August 2008 and October 2012. His most recent start led to a first: the removal of fluids.

Wilson took the mound against the Rangers on Saturday, two days after originally scheduled because of elbow soreness, then he had fluid drained from his left elbow shortly after. He threw his normal between-starts bullpen session from the Coliseum on Wednesday and said the elbow felt "way better than it was a week ago."

Wilson, who will start Friday against the Giants, has been told he can continue to pitch every five days.

Asked about his level of concern, Wilson said: "None. There's a formula. I know what to do. We know what the process needs to be. If we just stick to that process, we'll be fine."

Wilson -- 1-2 with a 3.12 ERA in his first four starts -- gave up a run on seven hits and three walks in 5 2/3 innings Saturday, striking out four. To compensate for his sore elbow, the 34-year-old left-hander threw 43 percent sinkers. After getting fluid drained, Wilson felt better "immediately."

"Way better," he said.

"I don't have any concern," Angels pitching coach Mike Butcher added. "As long as he's telling me that he's good to go, I'm good to go."

Fluid buildup in the elbow is typically caused by bursitis, or inflammation in the bursa, a fluid-filled sac that acts as a cushion between bone and tendon. The fluid restricts movement, and draining it is a method that commonly relieves symptoms. Sometimes, however, it has to be done multiple times.

Wilson doesn't expect being able to "reach back and throw 94 mph," which is typically max effort.

"But we'll see what happens Friday, in terms of what stuff shows up," Wilson said. "I felt good today. I felt way better today than I did going into my last start, and I pitched well last start."

Wilson saw the inflammation as a positive, that his body had a natural defense mechanism to fight the trauma of pitching through a balky elbow. But he conceded that the removal of bone spurs this offseason -- for the third time in his career -- is inevitable.

"Yeah, I would say that," Wilson said. "It's inevitable.

"That's not a big deal, though. It's super straightforward. The rehab is very short, and then it works better and you go from there."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.