Orioles outfielder Luke Scott, who was placed on the disabled list Saturday and is will miss the rest of the season, has not decided whether he will have surgery to repair the torn labrum in his right shoulder or whether he'll rest and rehab it. Both scenarios have worked for other players.
Scott expects to seek a second opinion, perhaps next week, from renowned surgeon James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala.
"What I'm going to do is gather all the information that I need as quick as I can and then sit down, pray about it, find out what's going to be the best course to take," Scott said. "It all depends on their schedule and when they can take me. I'm available whenever they can get me in. I'm gonna go get another professional opinion and put together all the information I need to make this decision."
Scott attempted to play through the discomfort, which has bothered him since May. He came off the disabled on Friday, had three at-bats as designated hitter, and realized he couldn't drive pitches properly.
"Basically, [Friday] night was a good indicator of whether I could catch up to a fastball that's low to mid 90's," said Scott, who finishes the season batting .220 with nine homers and 22 RBIs in 209 at-bats. "I did everything I could to get to it, and I just couldn't do it. It's just not working."
If he chooses surgery, he'll be out four to six months — which means he needs to do it soon to be ready for next spring. Rest and rehab may not take as long, but it still puts him out for the rest of this year. That reality hit Scott hard on Friday.
"It's like getting kicked really hard in the stomach without someone telling you," said Scott, 33. "You put so much into this game, you put so much into your heart's desire, so much work. You hope for the best. I really believed — I was thinking positive — that I was going to get through this. … That's what it takes whenever you're going through these difficult times. When you realize that it's not going to work out the way that you want, it becomes very, very difficult to handle."
There's also a possibility this is the end of Scott's four-season career as an Oriole. He has one more offseason of arbitration eligibility and made $6.4 million this season. Even if he took an allowable paycut, he still would be line for a hefty salary — and the Orioles may not want to invest millions into a slugger recovering from injury.
"My heart's desire is that I want to be here when the organization makes that turn to get back to where we need to be. But that's out of my hands," Scott said. "All I can do is get ready for this challenge that's coming up, getting myself ready for next spring training, and bring to the table what I bring to the table when I'm healthy. Then the rest of that's the Orioles' decision."
The team recalled 24-year-old third baseman Josh Bell from Triple-A Norfolk to replace Scott on the roster Saturday.