Marrero to undergo ankle surgery

May 12, 2003 at 8:22 PM

ST. LOUIS, May 12 (UPI) -- Eli Marrero, who provides St. Louis Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa with necessary flexibility in the outfield and behind the plate, will undergo right ankle surgery Tuesday and is sidelined indefinitely.

Marrero suffered the injury in the fourth inning of St. Louis' game with the Chicago Cubs on Sunday. He damaged the ligaments in the ankle trying to avoid center fielder Jim Edmonds on a fly ball in right-center field.

Marrero, who had to be carried from the field, will have surgery Tuesday at Barnes West in St. Louis. Team physician George Paletta will perform the procedure and the team will make an announcement regarding Marrero's recovery time following the surgery.

The injury is the latest in a number of physical problems he has had this year.

Marrero endured a bout of gastroesophageal reflux during spring training, sidelining him for much of the preseason, then he missed significant time because of a deep thigh bruise suffered on Opening Day.

"It's a shame," said St. Louis Manager Tony La Russa. "He had a tough spring, the stomach thing. He was just starting to feel really good in all phases of the game."

"We lost a player and pretty much nothing came out of this but sitting around and getting somebody hurt."

Marrero was hurt trying to avoid a collision with centerfielder Jim Edmonds on a fly ball.

"We lost a player and pretty much nothing came out of this but sitting around and getting somebody hurt," Edmonds said.

The 29-year-old Marrero is hitting .227 with two homers and 15 RBI in 24 games. He has seen time at catcher, first base and all three outfield positions. He is a career .238 hitter with 43 homers and 182 RBI in 508 games over seven seasons with the Cardinals.

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