Thursday, February 26, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Arias glad to be throwing again

By
From page B1 | January 16, 2014 |

FAIRFIELD — Nothing against presents, carols and all the other fa-la-la, but Anthony Arias couldn’t wait for Christmas to come and go.

He just wanted Jan. 9 to get here.

That was the first day Arias could throw a baseball, exactly six months after having Tommy John surgery to replace a torn ligament in the elbow of his pitching arm.

And it’s no ordinary left arm. Arias helped pitch the Fairfield Expos American Legion baseball team to the California state title in the summer of 2012. And after signing a letter intent to play for Fresno State, he threw the first five innings of a combined no-hitter for Fairfield High just 26 days before his elbow injury.

“I was excited for it to be six months,” Arias said last week before heading back to Fresno for the resumption of classes and baseball practice. “At the start of Christmas break I wasn’t thinking about Christmas, I wasn’t thinking about presents. I was thinking about throwing.

“I was excited because I’ve played baseball all my life. Being there having to sit on the bench when everybody else was playing wasn’t fun. It made me realize I had to be a teammate.”

There were other lessons to be learned through the process, which actually began when he was a Little Leaguer with Fairfield Atlantic.

His left arm began showing signs of stress and he was told to essentially shut it down for a season.

“My 11-year-old year I played right handed to rest my left arm,” Arias said. “I fixed it. I came back playing with no problems, no pain. I came up with (arm problems) again. It came back with a fight.”

Arias pitched a three-hitter against Armijo, striking out 16 batters and throwing 113 pitches in his second start of the season. He made five other appearances with pitch counts between 81 and 97 before something went wrong with two outs in his fifth inning of work against Solano County Athletic Conference favorite Benicia on April 16.

“I felt little pains inside (the elbow) before,” Arias said. “I thought nothing of it before. I threw those five innings. I threw a fastball and felt a sharp pain in my elbow. It was weird. I felt like I could hear nothing around me. I zoned in on the pain.”

Indeed, Arias’ elbow woes had come back “with a fight.”

“The doctor said it was long-term being messed up, a long-term injury,” Arias said. “I had to learn to move on with life with it.”

The injury kept Arias from pitching but not from playing for the Falcons. He got into 25 games, mostly as a DH, third-most on the team, and batted .286, finishing second with 15 RBIs.

As Arias went in for surgery on July 9, his mind was filled with questions, some of which will take years to be answered.

“When I went in I was thinking, ‘Is my arm ever going to be the same? Am I ever going to throw again?’ I thought a lot of things,” Arias said. “Am I going to be able to throw as hard as before? How long will it take? Is it going to affect my long-term goals and dreams of being an athlete?”

Arias had a cast on his arm for a week and wore a brace that limited the movement of his elbow for several more weeks.

Once he got to Fresno, “I’d do small little drills to let me stretch my arm out more and more,” Arias said. He was also able to work out with the team, but only on a limited basis. He also worked on rebuilding the muscle on the arm, which had atrophied from lack of use while he was mending.

“I was either chasing foul balls or running when the team would be doing things,” Arias said. “I was running when the team was throwing. I wouldn’t say it was boring. When they were doing fundamentals I’d do fundamentals, but when it came to the throwing part, I kept my arm down.”

He finally got to pick up a baseball and throw it in the yard of his family’s home on Jan. 9, essentially unwrapping a late Christmas present.

“I had no pain. It was more excitement and joy to actually throw,” he said. “It seems like a couple of weeks ago I was looking down at my arm with a lot of muscle atrophy. I was thinking I can’t believe the muscle’s gone.”

Now that he’s back with the team working out – and able to throw – he’s unsure of his status with the Bulldogs for the 2014 season.

“It’s one of those things, I feel I should redshirt,” Arias said. “They haven’t told me anything. I feel I should get a strong as I can. They can’t control the outcome, but they’ve given me the tools to succeed. I need time to heal. I don’t feel I should rush things and this year not think so much about playing, think about getting stronger, being a better team player.”

He figures there are other benefits from sitting out a year, many of them to do with his head.

“I can get a head start in school. There’s a lot of things I’ve thought about,” Arias said. “I’m looking at this as not something that’s messed up my life. It was meant to happen. Things happen for a reason. It’s an opportunity to get stronger, get started in school.”

Whether on not Arias plays in 2014, teammate Trent Woodward, a redshirt junior catcher from Chino Hills who’s also had Tommy John surgery, has helped him get over some of the hurdles.

“It’s been a journey. The catcher over at Fresno State (Woodward) has been kind of my older brother, like a mentor to me, getting me through this,” Arias said. “He told me Tommy John (surgery) is a marathon, but that doesn’t mean you can’t sprint the marathon.”

Since Jan. 9, Arias has certainly picked up the pace

Reach Paul Farmer at 425-4646, ext. 264, or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pfarmerdr.

Paul Farmer

Paul Farmer is a 1985 graduate of Brigham Young University. The Suisun City resident has been with the Daily Republic Sports Department since 1989 and has served as sports editor since 2007. He and his wife Jackie have four children.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
Children tackle history during Wax Museum project

By Susan Winlow | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Suisun Walmart to open March 25

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A1, 14 Comments | Gallery

 
Searchers find infant’s body

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1, 3 Comments

 
 
Pedestrians hit by cars in 2 separate incidents

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 9 Comments | Gallery

 
 
Legislative committee votes for earthquake relief bill

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A4

 
Vacaville police clear homeless from area

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A4, 5 Comments

 
NorthBay Healthcare Group expands lease

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A5

 
State to close part of I-80 to continue project

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A5

Fairfield police log: Feb. 24, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
Suisun City police log: Feb. 24, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

.

US / World

Family celebrating one-month birthdays of identical triplets

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Dog owner lawsuit alleges food made his pups sick

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

What happens, and not, in Homeland Security shutdown

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Pet shop owner found guilty of arson

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Harris only Dem left after Villaraigosa exits campaign

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Regulators eyeing tighter cybersecurity requirements

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Technology might have prevented deaths in train crash

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Speaker has plan to help fund affordable housing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Massive I-95 pileup leaves 17 injured in snowy Maine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

CEO has plan for crime prediction system

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Journalists arrested in Paris for drone flights

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Afghanistan avalanche destroys homes, kills 124

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Polanski appears in court to face extradition

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Hungarian village available for rent

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
.

Opinion

 
Chinese economy may be stalling – and that’s OK

By William Pesek | From Page: A7

 
Time to put down the joystick

By Kelvin Wade | From Page: A7

Editorial Cartoon: Feb. 26, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
.

Living

Today in History: Feb. 26, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Feb. 26, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Feb. 26, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

 
.

Entertainment

Gucci designer makes debut during Milan Fashion Week

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
People: Lindsay Lohan

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
.

Sports

 
Bay Area’s Semien in the mix for A’s shortstop job

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Clark says players against radical speed-up changes

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Kings grind out 102-90 win over Grizzlies in Sacramento

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

McIlroy looking to keep momentum to the Masters

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
IOC head quizzed about water shortages in Rio, golf course

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

.

Business

.

Obituaries

Felipe Mata Mislang

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Thomas Browning

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9