Philadelphia, PA – Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard has a ruptured left Achilles tendon and will have surgery once the swelling goes down, the team said Saturday.
Howard was injured on the final play of Philadelphia's Game 5 loss Friday night to the St. Louis Cardinals when he appeared to tweak something leaving the batter's box on a ground ball.
He made it only halfway up the line, crumbling to the ground as he was easily thrown out at first base.
An MRI on Saturday revealed the extent of the injury, confirming what Howard seemed to know after the game when he said he "felt this pop."
Howard's recovery time won't be known until the surgery is complete and there is no guarantee he will be ready for spring training, the Phillies said in a news release.
It hasn't been determined who will perform the surgery.
The bizarre scene that played out around Howard on Friday betrayed season-long expectations that the Phillies would not only contend this season, but would win their second World Series in four years.
Instead, the Cardinals celebrated their series-clinching win as Howard writhed in pain on the Citizens Bank Park grass.
"The whole thing just went numb and was on fire," Howard said afterward. "I tried to keep going and went down. Literally felt like I was on a flat tire."
His isn't the only injury concern for a Phillies team saddled with an aging roster.
Third baseman Placido Polanco, slowed most of the season by a sports hernia, will likely have surgery. Right fielder Hunter Pence will also get an MRI for his sports hernia, with a plan to be determined afterward, the Phillies said.
Left-handed starter Cole Hamels will have loose bodies removed from his pitching elbow on October 14 and also has a inguinal hernia that will require surgery a week later.
Bench player Ross Gload will have his right hip re-examined and will likely need arthroscopic surgery.