Published: March 9, 2009

The surgery on the right hip of Alex Rodriguez was successful, his physician said after it was completed on Monday, and Rodriguez was to leave the hospital in Vail, Colo, and begin rehabilitation immediately in Colorado.

Marc Philippon, MD, an orthopedic surgeon, said in a conference call that Rodriguez would use a stationary bicycle and isometric exercises to begin a process that is expected to take 6 to 9 weeks.

If all goes well, Rodriguez is expected to return to the Yankees in May, when the team will have played about one-quarter of its 162-game American League season.

Another surgery to correct underlying problems in the joint is expected to be performed in November, Philippon said the recovery from that operation will be shorter than this one. Rodriguez’s labrum was repaired and the cartilage was stabilized, the physician said.

Rodriguez was treated at the Vail Valley Surgery Center.

The option for this operation was one of three considered over the weekend by Rodriguez and the Yankees. The first was to eschew surgery for the time being and try to play the season, but that would have risked worsening the injury. The other option was to have a full surgery to correct all of the underlying bone problems in the joint, which would have meant a 4-month recovery.

Rodriguez could remain in Colorado for up to a month to recover. After that, he is likely to report to Tampa for intense baseball drills while his teammates play the first few weeks of the season.

Rodriguez, a three-time most valuable player, is in the second year of a 10-year contract worth $275 million. His problems were discovered last week when he complained of stiffness in his hip and went to Colorado to have a cyst in the hip drained.

Mark Lindsay, a Toronto-based chiropractor and soft-tissue specialist, will monitor Rodriguez’s recovery from surgery, the Yankees have said. Lindsay has worked in the past with tennis player Maria Sharapova, golf’s Tiger Woods, and Mets shortstop José Reyes.

After Rodriguez returns to the Yankees, Lindsay will travel to see him wherever he is to monitor his condition and to report back to Philippon. Lindsay, who has worked closely with Philippon for several years, will meet with Rodriguez several times a week in his first month back with the team and likely on a weekly basis after that.

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[Source: New York Times]