CHICAGO: It was the worst case scenario but probably the best option.
When Dr. Richard Steadman looked inside Grady Sizemore's knee with an arthroscope today, he knew that microfracture surgery would serve the best interests of his patient, and probably nothing else would.
""One of the things Grady said to him was, "I'm 27, and I want to play a long time at a high level,' '' head trainer Lonnie Soloff said. ""He also said he wanted to have (only) one knee operation.''
Steadman performed the surgery that he pioneered in the '80s and '90s in Vail, Colo. Sizemore is scheduled to return to Cleveland on Thursday and will begin the long rehabilitation process. However, he is expected to play in spring training games next March.
Initially, Sizemore won't be doing a lot of moving around.
""Why it (recovery) takes as long as it does is because his weight-bearing ability is limited to allow the best chance of healing,'' Soloff said.
In the meantime, Trevor Crowe will continue to take Sizemore's place in center field, though Michael Brantley will eventually be called up from Columbus and play at least part time in center, as well as in left.
""At some point, the second half or whenever, we'll probably give Brantley an opportunity,'' manager Manny Acta said. ""We anticipated that would happen, whether we had Grady or not.''