Lance Berkman was placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with a right knee injury, and the early prognosis has not been positive.
Berkman suffered the injury reaching for a throw in the second inning of the St. Louis Cardinals 6-0 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday. He is scheduled for an MRI Monday, but the six-time all-star said the injury felt similar to his 2005 ACL tear. At 36 years old, retirement would not be out of the question if Berkman has to work back from a severe knee injury.
“If I’ve re-torn my ACL or something like that, I’d certainly get it fixed but you don’t know how psychologically you’re going to come back from something like that,” Berkman said. “I’m not talking from the standpoint of being scared of hurting it again. I’m talking about doing everything it takes to come back and play again at an elite level. I think that’s a legitimate question I’m going to have to answer if, in fact, it turns out to be something more serious than we hope that it is.”
Rookie first baseman Matt Adams will fill in while Berkman is evaluated. The DL stint is the sixth in his 14-year career, including significant injuries to both knees.
Berkman has appeared in only 13 games this season, batting .333 with one homer and four RBIs. The slugger was sidelined for 21 games after straining his left calf earlier in the year.
“We’re just going to wait and see what the MRI says, but it just doesn’t feel right,” Berkman said. “It buckled on me twice, and I don’t know why it did that. I was able to move around OK in here, and then it buckled again. So I have to be careful with it. It’s not too painful, but it’s just a weird feeling. I wish I could describe it. There’s a little bit of instability, and that’s mildly concerning.”
Berkman has a career .296 BA to go along with 359 home runs, and was the NL Comeback Player of the Year last season. More information will be available after Monday’s MRI.