Relieved he doesn't need TJ, Cueto admits he pitched through constant pain


PHILADELPHIA -- When a pitcher says his elbow is hurting, the mind usually jumps to Tommy John surgery. Cueto's did, as well, and he was mentally preparing for the worst when he went in to see Dr. James Andrews on Monday morning. 

Andrews almost always comes back with a recommendation to have surgery, but he had Cueto take a contrast MRI and then encouraged him to rehab. Cueto is hopeful that surgery will never be in the cards.

"He's the best in the business, I have to trust him," Cueto said through interpreter Erwin Higueros.

The right-hander will rest and get treatment for two weeks and then be re-evaluated. Trainer Dave Groeschner said there are no plans for an injection of any kind. The hope is that Cueto's elbow tear will scar down and he'll be able to continue pitching. Groeschner said the Giants have had other pitchers quietly do the same in the past.

Cueto has already shown he can pitch through discomfort, if any remains. He said he was in constant pain over his final three starts, but he led the Majors with a 0.84 ERA when he went on the DL. Even then, Cueto offered to make one final start before seeing Andrews.

"You go back 30-40 years and pitchers did that all the time," manager Bruce Bochy said of pitching through pain. "That's what Johnny was saying."

Cueto will miss at least six to eight weeks, but that was the best-case scenario.

"I feel relieved," he said. "My family is happy, I'm happy. I can see my teammates are happy that I'm not going to have Tommy John surgery."

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