Al Alburquerque underwent surgery on his throwing elbow today. The Tigers issued the following press release:
Alburquerque underwent a surgical procedure to have a screw inserted into his olecranon to stabilize a non-displaced stress fracture in his right elbow. The procedure was performed by Dr. James Andrews in Pensacola, FL on Thursday, December 15.
Alburquerque will be non-throwing for the next 12 weeks and he is expected to begin a throwing progression program during the latter part of Spring Training with a return to game action by the all-star break of the 2012 season.
Alburquerque appeared in 41 games with the Tigers during the 2011 season, posting a 6-1 record, 1.87 ERA (43.1IP/9ER) and 67 strikeouts. He led all American League relievers with a .142 batting average against, 4.36 hits per nine innings and 13.92 strikeouts per nine innings.
Alburquerque was a pleasant surprise for the Tigers last year, even if wild at times. Unfortunately, they'll be without the high strikeout guy for half a season and will need someone else to step up in his stead.