Pain like “a knife in the back of my foot” – Phillies’ Carlos Ruiz

31 Jul

Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz knew something was wrong when he woke up one June morning in Los Angeles and his left foot was giving him a little pain. After an exam by the team’s medical staff, it was determined that Ruiz had a mild case of Plantar Fasciitis. No one was too concerned about it – some stretches, a little rest, and he’d be just fine.

carlos ruiz baseball card

But last week his pain became so acute that he only played as a pinch-hitter and he did it in sneakers instead of cleats. That’s when he told the Philly sports press that “it felt like a knife in the back of my foot”. 

Ruiz is no slouch behind the plate or at bat, and considering the  injuries the Phillies endured this year, it’s crucial he stay in the lineup.

Ruiz is tied for most games played by a catcher and only three others have squatted behind home plate for more innings. He raced through the first half of the season with a .350 batting average and largely avoided the hazards of everyday catching.

Since the start of that series in Los Angeles (the beginning of his foot pain), Ruiz is hitting .267 (8 for 30) with four doubles. His season batting average is .344, which is the lowest since May 16 (.343). –

It’s now clear that what the Phillies’ medical staff perceived as a minor injury has significantly impacted Ruiz’ performance. It’s nothing you should avoid getting checked out, either.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar Fasciitis is a medical term for heel pain. It’s an inflammation of the band of tissue that extends from the heel to the toes and is usually caused by (in this case) overuse, obesity, or bio-mechanical problems with the foot, such as flat feet. Left untreated, plantar fasciitis can become so painful that it’s impossible to walk. It’s important that you have your feet examined as soon as it becomes apparent that rest, ice, and over the counter anti inflammatory medicines like advil or aleve aren’t making it better.

Treatment options for Plantar Fasciitis

plantar fasciitis illustration

PA Foot and Ankle’s Heel Pain Center of the Lehigh Valley specializes in treating Plantar Fasciitis. Among the treatment options which may be presented to you are:

  • Physical therapy with Robbins Rehabilitation, the official physical therapy center for East Penn Foot and Ankle
  • EPAT Therapy, which utilizes shock waves to stimulate blood flow in the affected area, accelerating the natural healing process
  • PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) Therapy, which uses your own blood and the body’s natural defenses to stimulate healing
  • Prolo Therapy, which uses a dextrose (sugar) solution injected into the inflamed area, helping the tissue to repair itself
  • The use of Icy Feet, a product which enables you to ice your feet every day… without ice (available at East Penn Foot and Ankle)

Plantar Fasciitis can become a serious condition if ignored. If you’re suffering heel pain of any kind, call the East Penn Foot and Ankle Heel Pain Center and schedule a thorough examination immediately.

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