CHICAGO — Cubs pitcher Yu Darvish was questioning his own feelings about his injured elbow until doctors finally figured out what was wrong with him, he said Thursday afternoon.
Darvish was shut down for the season earlier this week after being diagnosed with a stress reaction (bone bruise) in his right elbow.
“Until the diagnosis, there was some time I thought it could be my mental side because there was an unknown factor,” Darvish said through his interpreter. “With the diagnosis, I’m relieved to know what that something was.”
Darvish was well aware of the criticism he had been receiving since going down with the injury, which was left undiagnosed from late May until a few days ago. He had an MRI arthrogram done over the weekend, revealing the extent of the injury, which requires at least six weeks of rest.
“A person can’t really tell how much an injury hurts because you’re not that person,” Darvish said. “It’s natural for me to receive those kinds of comments towards me because they don’t really understand where the pain is and how much the pain is.”
Darvish made eight starts for the Cubs in the first year of a six-year, $126 million contract. He was 1-3 with a 4.95 ERA before going down. The Cubs are trying to hold off the Cardinals and Brewers in a tight NL Central race.
“Some people referred to this as a weakness on the mental side, and because there was this uncertainty this whole time, I kind of speculated that might be a factor,” he said. “The mental side. With the diagnosis, I’m relieved to know it’s not and it was something serious in my arm.”
Darvish was asked whether he was contemplating retirement, something he pondered before becoming a free agent last offseason.
“If this was something in regards to a mental weakness, then that would prove baseball isn’t my sport, shouldn’t be what I’m doing,” Darvish said.