10/08/2003 5:24 PM ET
Oswalt surgery complete
Plus: Hernandez records two solid starts
By Alyson Footer / MLB.com
Roy Oswalt was on the DL three times in 2003 with a right groin strain. (Mark Lyons/AP)
HOUSTON -- Right-hander Roy Oswalt underwent successful surgery Wednesday to remove a torn sheath from the area surrounding his right groin.
The outpatient procedure was performed by groin specialist Dr. William Meyers in Philadelphia. Astros team doctor David Lintner assisted. Oswalt will rest for four weeks before beginning strengthening exercises and he is expected to resume normal activity in three months.
The Astros expect Oswalt, who was 10-5 with a 2.97 ERA in 2003, to be ready for action when Spring Training convenes in February.
Outfielder Jason Lane will have surgery Thursday in Worcester, Mass., to repair a sports hernia. Dr. Brian Bosconi will perform the procedure.
Instructional League: General manager Gerry Hunsicker and assistant GM Tim Purpura are in the midst of a week-long stay in Kissimmee, Fla., where they are spending time with scouting and player development staff involved with Instructional League.
Hunsicker and Purpura are also keeping a close eye on left-hander Carlos Hernandez, who is pitching for the Instructional League squad in what are his first steps toward returning to the Astros' rotation in 2004.
Hernandez has pitched in two games. He threw 44 pitches in his first start last Thursday and 54 pitches Tuesday.
"We seem to be on our way," Hunsicker said. "He was wild in the first inning (of his first start), which was understandable. He threw 22 pitches in first inning, but then threw 22 over the next two. It was a successful first outing."
Hernandez displayed better control in his second game on Tuesday. He threw four innings against the Tigers' Instructional League squad, allowing two runs on five hits with two walks and three strikeouts.
"He had a good fastball," Purpura observed. "He averaged 89 (mph) but got as high as 91, which is good progress."
Hernandez will make three more starts in Florida, adding one inning in each start until he reaches seven in his final outing. If all goes well, Hernandez will head to his native Venezuela to play Winter Ball.
According to Purpura, Hernandez is as pleased with his progress as Astros officials are.