Were Chen's struggles related to his knee?

Were Chen's struggles related to his knee?
October 11, 2013, 3:15 pm
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Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Wei-Yin Chen (16) throws in the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

(Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports)

Perhaps there’s now an explanation for Wei-Yin Chen’s late-season struggles. After a winless final seven decisions, Chen underwent surgery on his right knee to remove small bone spurs, the Orioles announced on Thursday night.

Chen’s surgery will be much bigger news in his native Taiwan. Here, it was buried under the Manny Machado surgery avalanche.

He missed two months with a strained oblique, and won his first three decisions after his July return. Then, the left-hander won just once in his last 11 starts, finishing with a 7-7 record and 4.07 ERA.

Chen has had a hard time in the latter part of his first two seasons. The surgery, which was performed by Dr. Richard Steadman in Vail, Colorado, took place last week.

He was planning to spend much of the winter in Sarasota, Fla. Now, his training will be delayed, but the Orioles expect him to be ready for the start of spring training.

Chen has won lots of friends in the Orioles clubhouse for his toughness, and if it turns out the reason for his struggles was related to his knee, his stock may go up even more.