Kyle McClellan avoids elbow surgery

ST. LOUIS -- Cardinals reliever Kyle McClellan says he will not need surgery on his sore right elbow.

McClellan said Tuesday that a second opinion from noted orthopedist Dr. James Andrews confirmed an earlier diagnosis by St. Louis team medical director Dr. George Paletta.

"I was happy with the news, definitely. I was hoping that was going to be the case that he would agree with Paletta," McClellan said.

"When you think of the options that they are, this is definitely the better one," he said.

McClellan said he received an injection of platelets in his arm designed to help speed the recovery.

"They take your blood and they spin it and take the healing platelets and the good blood cells and then inject it into your problem area," McClellan said. "It's to encourage swelling and healing to the area. It's helping me."

He said he believes he'll be able to begin throwing in six weeks and would like to return to the Cardinals in August.

"That's good news for us," St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. "Good stuff. I was happy to hear that."

McClellan went on the disabled last Friday with a strained ulnar collateral ligament and partly torn flexor muscle near his right elbow. He had pitched the previous day in San Francisco and left in the seventh inning.

McClellan has a 5.30 ERA in 16 appearances.

McClellan required a ligament transplant as a minor league pitcher in 2006.

"It's definitely a relief to learn this," he said. "I thought when it happened, it was the same feeling. I had a lot of pain that made me think this is not going to be good. The chances that I have now to get over this without surgery are good."

"The scary think like Dr. Andrews said is there is no guarantee the second one would work out. If that doesn't work, then what? Then you're done. So this is all good news," he said.