Washington Nationals Pitcher John Patterson has a problem. He's been on the DL for two months with a slow to heal nerve problem in his right elbow. And after visiting four doctors in four states, he's still had no success.
So Patterson is heading to Canada for treatment. Is it because he saw Michael Moore's "Sicko" over the weekend? Probably not, but here's why:
Asked why his opening-day starter is going out of the country for medical treatment, Nationals Manager Manny Acta said, "It's because that treatment is not approved here in the States yet."Acta said that Patterson's proposed treatment is similar to the homeopathic treatment Athletics closer Huston Street underwent recently.
This injury isn't anything for Patterson.
His nerve problem was first identified last season, when he made just eight starts for the Nationals. He had surgery July 20 to decompress the median nerve in his right arm, and spent this spring trying to rebuild arm strength, but in eight starts this season, he never regained his velocity. He went 1-5 with a 7.47 ERA, last pitching in Chicago May 5.It must be scary to be in the position of Patterson, wondering about your arm, and the career implications that its continued troubles brings. And it's even scarier to have to go to another country in the quest to solve your health troubles. I suppose if Patterson has seen "Sicko," then he must be wondering if he should be going to Cuba instead. Personally, I'd stick with Toronto.