NEW YORK -- After receiving the results of the MRI exam performed Friday on Tommy Hanson's right shoulder, the Braves remained optimistic that he could pitch again this year.
The MRI showed a small undersurface rotator cuff tear. The Braves said this condition is commonly found in pitchers' shoulders and does not need to be repaired surgically. This latest exam also confirmed that his labrum and the remainder of his shoulder appeared to be structurally sound.
Hanson will visit noted surgeon Dr. James Andrews at his Pensacola, Fla., office Monday.
Hanson has been sidelined since Aug. 6, and the season will end Sept. 28. Thus there is a chance the Braves could go through the stretch run without the 24-year-old right-hander.
After performing MRI exams in June and again earlier this month on Hanson's shoulder, the Braves revealed he was dealing with tendinitis. He received a cortisone shot after each exam.
When Hanson was initially diagnosed with tendinitis two months ago, he missed two weeks and felt tightness when he returned to start against the Mariners on June 26. He did not seem to be ailing when he allowed two runs in 14 innings over his next two starts.
But Hanson has posted an 8.10 ERA and allowed opponents a .370 on-base percentage in his five starts since the All-Star break.