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Orthop Rev (Pavia). 2013 Feb 22;5(1):e3. doi: 10.4081/or.2013.e3. Print 2013 Feb 22.

The epidemiology of single season musculoskeletal injuries in professional baseball.

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Hospital for Special Surgery, Division of Sports Medicine and Shoulder Surgery, New York, NY, USA;


The aim of this descriptive epidemiology study was to evaluate the injury incidence, pattern and type as a function of position in one professional baseball organization for one complete season. The study was carried out in a major academic center. Participants were all major/minor league baseball players playing for one professional organization. The disabled/injury list of one single professional baseball organization (major and minor league players) was reviewed for all of the injuries and the number of total days missed secondary to each injury. All injuries were categorized into major anatomic zones that included: shoulder, elbow, wrist/hand, back, abdomen/groin, hip, knee, and ankle/foot. The data was further stratified based on the injury type and the number of days missed due to that particular injury and a statistical analysis was performed. In pitchers, elbow injuries (n=12) resulted in 466 days missed. In catchers, wrist injuries (n=4) resulted in 89 days missed. In position players, abdominal/groin injuries (n=16) resulted in 318 days missed and shoulder injuries (n=9) resulted in 527 days missed. Overall, 134 players were injured and a total of 3209 days were missed. Pitchers had 27 times and 34 times the rate of days missed due to elbow injuries compared to position players and all players, respectively. Abdominal and groin injuries caused the pitchers to have 5.6 times and 6.4 times the rate of days missed than the position and all players, respectively. Both elbow and abdominal/groin injuries are the most disabling injury pattern seen in pitchers. Among the position players, shoulder injuries resulted in the most days missed and knee injuries resulted in the highest rate of days missed in both pitchers and catchers.


MLB baseball; abdominal/ groin injuries.; epidemiology; lower body injuries; upper body injuries

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