Dr. Mark Myerson, the same doctor who surgically repaired Howard’s Achilles tendon in October, treated the infection.
Team athletic trainer Scott Sheridan told reporters the tendon was “intact and not compromised” but that it was obviously vital to have this procedure done as quickly as possible.
“I think it’s common for the skin behind the Achilles to have trouble healing,” Sheridan said, according to ESPN. “I don’t know that it’s common for the infection to occur. But I do know that the area is a tough area to heal. It doesn’t have very good blood supply.”
It is still unknown when Howard will be able to begin activities during spring training as he has missed team workouts for the past four days. The Phillies want Howard back on the field to get him prepared for the start of the season but it is clearly more important not to rush things in case he needs extra time to recover from the infection.
“I have no idea [when Howard will return],” Sheridan said. “We’ll talk to Dr. Myerson in the next couple of days, see how he responds to the antibiotics, and we’ll go from there. The things that Ryan had been doing (until this) were very good. We had been doing some basic cutting with him. We’re hoping we can just kind of move forward from here and that this won’t push it back too much.”
In 152 games last season, Howard had 33 home runs, 116 RBIs, 81 Runs with a .253 batting average and .346 on-base percentage.
The Phillies won the NL East by a landslide last season with a 102-60 record. There were high hopes for the team with many experts predicting another World Series title. Unfortunately, Philadelphia lost to the eventual World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Divisional Series where Howard tore his Achilles tendon running to first base on the final out.