On August 11, 2013, Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Cody Ross fell while running to first. It was a routine ground out, but his spike caught in the dirt at a weird angle and he stumbled. Awkwardly. Then, he tumbled. He had dislocated and broken his hip.
It’s believed that Ross was the first – and only – major league player to ever break a hip while running the bases.
It was, they said, a freak injury.
Editor/Husband’s doctors and nurses assured him last week that he is the first – and only – person to ever break a hip while meditating. (They all got quite a chuckle out of that.)
It was, they said, a freak injury.
(Please do not assume that this means meditating is dangerous. Wearing soft, slippery socks on a wood Yoga studio floor when you’re over 40 is dangerous. Because you could slip. And, break your hip. Meditating, however, which Editor/Husband was doing at my Yoga studio, is not, itself, bad for you.)
Cody Ross’s father was both a chiropractor and a professional bull rider. (I know, I can’t wrap my head around that combo either.) Cody was a star athlete in high school in Carlsbad, New Mexico – he was called up to the varsity baseball team as a freshman and homered in his first at bat. “He hit it over the fence, over the lights, and over the road,” a former teammate recalled.
He is still, today, a legend there.
(And, he is no relation to David Ross, the journeyman catcher who just won the World Series with the Cubs in November.)
I wish I could tell you that Cody Ross came back from his hip injury, good as new. He didn’t. He was 32 when he was injured. That’s about 85 in dog years for a big-leaguer. Surgery required a complete repair of the hip socket.
The next season, 2014, he played 83 games for the Diamondbacks. His stats had declined, but age will do that, too. Released by the D’backs in April 2015, he was quickly signed by the Oakland A’s.
On April 25, 2015, the A’s hosted the Houston Astros. Playing left and batting eighth, Ross went 0-for-3 that day, collecting an RBI on a fielder’s choice and later scoring in the 7th. In the bottom of the 9th, with the A’s trailing, Ross walked with one out and one on. The game ended with the A’s losing 9-3 and Ross still on base.
Ross’s fielder’s choice RBI in the 7th.
It was Ross’s last appearance in baseball. The A’s released him on May 3.
Ross will be remembered most for his 2010 season with the San Francisco Giants, their World Series-winning season. He was claimed off waivers by the Giants in August and became a crucial part of their successful post-season – in the NLDS, ’CS, and World Series, he batted .294, including five home runs and 10 RBIs. He was named Most Valuable Player of the NLCS.
Editor/Husband’s freak injury was much less serious. The top of his femur, aka thigh bone, fractured. So they call it a hip fracture, although, technically, it is his thigh that broke.
Not his actual femur.
Editor/Husband opted for spinal anesthesia rather than full anesthesia during surgery and he said he could hear the surgeon hammering the rod into his thigh.
Something like this.
Editor/Husband’s recovery will be simpler than Cody Ross’s. And, the demands on his hip much less. (College baseball season starts in February and I’m already scheming as to how I will coax his broken hip up the stairs to our seats at Davenport Field.)
When he’s not breaking his hip, Editor/Husband works at the Wildlife Center of Virginia, where vets routinely repair broken bones on owls and squirrels and eagles and bear cubs. This is as awesome a job as it sounds.
Wildlife Center staff and supporters know Editor/Husband as Big Bear – called that in the same affectionate way that baseball fans call Pablo Sandoval Panda Bear.
Today, Sandoval is with the Boston Red Sox …
… But, for seven seasons (2008-2014) Panda Bear was beloved in San Francisco, where he was part of the Giants’ 2010, 2012, and 2014 World Series championships …
I’m sharing this post mainly to assure the staff and friends of the Wildlife Center that Editor/Husband – their Big Bear – is ok. He is not cranky or crabby or in pain. He’s a pretty good patient.
His leg is swollen and aches, but he walks with his walker, making ever-lengthening loops in our great room around the “cat tree.” Lap. Lap. Lap. Sometimes he will change directions from clockwise to counter-clockwise around the cat tree, just to mix things up. This can startle the cats, who try to give him wide berth.
He is reading. Doing crossword puzzles. Passing the time. I’ve filled the DVR with movies and we watched The Big Lebowski last night. If only this were baseball season, he could watch every single game.