Derek Lowe acknowledged Tuesday he’s been bothered by inflammation in his pitching elbow for the past six weeks. He got a cortisone shot on Sunday after struggling to get a grip on his pitches while giving up five runs in a season-low three innings against the Marlins.
Lowe said with two days to let the cortisone take effect, he planned to play catch Tuesday and then throw a bullpen session on Wednesday. He did not think it would hinder him from making his next scheduled start on Friday in Florida.
“I should be able to,” he said.
Lowe, who is 2-4 with a 4.93 ERA in his past nine starts, said he didn’t tell the Braves about his elbow stiffness until three weeks ago.
“I’ve done countless exams and talked to doctors,” said Lowe, who said it’s not an injury that would require surgery. “It’s not the (ulnar) ligament, it’s not the Tommy John thing. We’re just trying to figure out what we can do to get the swelling out where you can bend your arm.”
Lowe said he’s had trouble brushing his teeth and washing his hair with his right hand in the days following his starts. He hasn’t been playing any catch between starts.
“As the week goes on, it gets better,” he said.
Lowe, 37, has never been on the disabled list in 14 seasons in the majors. He said his mentality has always been to just pitch through, something he hopes to do with the help of a cortisone shot – the first he’s ever had.
“This is how I’ve always been as far as my body,” Lowe said. “I figure no matter what it is, I can just deal with it and pitch through it.”
Lowe said the inflammation was in the back of the elbow. He was told it’s pinching a nerve, which is why his hand felt so weak.
“The game on Sunday I knew I was in trouble when I started,” Lowe said. “I told (pitching coach) Roger (McDowell) after the third inning, ‘This is pointless. I can’t go any further.’ That’s when I came out of the game and got a shot after the game.”