Arizona Diamondbacks fans, and sports fans everywhere, recoiled in horror last July when short stop Stephen Drew suffered a terrible injury to his right ankle while sliding into home plate. The ankle was turned 180 degrees and Drew reached down and instinctively put it back in place. The diagnosis, not surprisingly, was a fracture along with torn ligaments. The expectation was that Drew would be back this season with a timetable given of May for his return.
Drew was yet to take the field for the Diamondbacks and will just this week head to Triple-A Reno to begin a rehab stint of unknown length. All along we've been given periodic updates on his status with words like "progress" and "patience" being used by manager Kirk Gibson.
On Tuesday, Diamondbacks managing partner Ken Kendrick broke the code of silence and spoke candidly about Drew's recovery process. This is from a radio interview heard on XTRA 910am with Brad Cesmat of Pros2Preps.com (full audio here):
"I'm going to be real direct about Stephen (Drew)," Kendrick said, "I believe Stephen should have been out there playing before now. Frankly, I for one am disappointed. I'm going to be real candid and say I think Stephen and his representatives are more focused on where Stephen's going to be a year from now than going out and supporting the team that's paying his salary."
Kendrick agreed with Cesmat that the situation wasn't being handled well and that he had concerns that Drew was "treating the situation with integrity."
Those are very strong words, chosen carefully and designed to elicit a response.
Kendrick said he hadn't spoken to Drew directly but others in the organization had discussed their concerns with him. The response has been Drew saying he needs more time to get ready.
Drew, who is represented by agent Scott Boras, will reportedly make $7.75 this season with a $13m mutual option for 2013. After these comments, it's hard to see that option being exercised.