Pollock 'going to push for' returning this season

Outfielder confident in D-backs' rehab process

Pollock 'going to push for' returning this season

PHOENIX -- When he fractured his right elbow sliding into home plate Friday night, D-backs outfielder A.J. Pollock said it felt like he was in a nightmare, like it wasn't really happening.

When he woke up Saturday morning, however, after a restless sleep with his arm in a cast, he realized that it was all too real.

"It was just one of those things where I was going to dive head-first some time this season," Pollock said. "It wasn't a dive, it was more kind of [on] the pop-up, I felt something. I've done it before, so I kind of didn't have a freak-out. I knew what happened. Lot of frustration."

Dr. Don Sheridan, the D-backs' orthopedic hand and upper extremity specialist, will perform surgery on Pollock. An exact date for the surgery has not been announced.

When he first fractured his right elbow at Spring Training in 2010, Pollock missed the entire season before returning for the Arizona Fall League that October. This time, he hopes the rehab process will take less time.

"It crushed me," Pollock said of the injury in 2010. "Way more equipped to handle it this time around. Just go in and get it right and never have a problem with it again. Very confident that the guy that I have doing it this time is going to nail it. It's not a fun process, but you grow as a person. You just take it day to day."

While not wanting to give a specific timeline, Pollock did give a hint when asked if he expected to be back this season.

"I'm going to push for it, yeah," Pollock said. "That's going to be my goal."

Since initially fracturing the elbow in 2010, Pollock has occasionally had discomfort in it. When it happened earlier this spring it did not initially concern him, but as time went on the thought of it being more serious did cross his mind.

Pollock played in a Major League game March 8, but then did not play in another one until Friday. In between, he had played in Minor League games, which would allow the team to have backdated a disabled-list stint if need be.

"Unfortunately, stuff happens in baseball," Pollock said. "I worked hard to get back to where I felt like I needed to be, and for some reason, it happened. I'm not going to try and figure out why. I'm confident in the rehab process. Our trainers are the best in the league, and I have a good doctor figuring it out. It's frustrating because of how amazing I feel like our team is."

Zinkie on Pollock's injury

Fantasy spin | Fred Zinkie (@FredZinkieMLB)

Even with an undetermined timeline for return, this five-category fantasy stud is likely lost for much of the season. Mixed-league owners will want to stash the outfielder on their bench or disabled list as they await more information. Unless the D-backs bring in outside reinforcements, their reigning Minor League Player of the Year, Socrates Brito, appears to be in line for a regular role. With the potential to post a solid batting average and 20 steals across 550 plate appearances, the 23-year-old can be scooped up in all 12-team, five-outfielder leagues, plus all formats with 14 or more owners.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.