Henry's Return Delayed
Indians outfielder taking more time in recovery
CLEVELAND—It took a diving, tumbling catch in the alley in center field, but the moment Jordan Henry's body came to a halt and he raised his glove, with the ball in it for the umpire to see, it was obvious the old Henry was indeed back.
Henry, a seventh-round draft pick in 2009 out of Mississippi, had been playing at Double-A Akron for two weeks following offseason microfracture surgery and rehab. But it wasn't until he was able to make the all-out catch against Richmond on July 3 that he served notice he was back to normal.
Flash back nearly 10 months, when a groggy Henry was giving way to anesthesia during a hospital visit in late September. He had no idea what kind of news he'd wake up to. Either way, he would have an operation on his right knee. Whether it would be a routine scope to clean up the cranky joint that had bothered the outfielder most of the second half of last season or a more serious microfracture procedure, remained to be seen.
"They told me (microfracture) could be a possibility once they got in there and saw the extent of the damage," Henry said. "But you're hoping that's not the case because the difference is a six-week rehab compared to eight or nine months."
Henry, 24, soon learned he had the lengthier rehab ahead of him, and would have the same procedure that Indians center fielder Grady Sizemore had in 2010. After being released from the hospital, Henry made his way to the Indians' spring training complex in Goodyear, Ariz., to begin the long road back.
"It felt like I was out in Arizona forever," Henry, 24, said. "But things have gone well and this is right about the time they thought I'd be back. "
Henry was hitting .226/.324/.247 in his first 93 at-bats with the Aeros. However, the second half of the season ought to show a better picture of his capabilities.
• The Indians claimed Vinny Rottino off waivers from the Mets. The 32-year-old had split the season between Triple-A Buffalo and the big leagues. To make room, the Tribe designated righthander Chris Schwinden for assignment.
• Akron outfielder Thomas Neal was the Eastern League and organization minor league player of the week after batting .500 (14-for-28) with six doubles, three home runs and 10 RBIs while posting a 1.598 OPS.