News

Pioneering ‘Tommy John’ surgeon dead at 88

Pioneering ‘Tommy John’ surgeon dead at 88

PIONEER: In 1974, orthopedic surgeon Frank Jobe transplanted a tendon to replace a torn left elbow ligament of Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Tommy John. The groundbreaking surgery was successful and John's subsequent comeback lasted 14 years, setting such a precedent for future patients that the surgery bears his name. Photo: Associated Press

(Reuters) – Dr. Frank Jobe, who pioneered the ‘Tommy John’ elbow surgery that has prolonged the careers of athletes in a variety of sports, particularly baseball, has died at the age of 88.

In 1974, orthopedic surgeon Jobe transplanted a tendon to replace a torn left elbow ligament of Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Tommy John.

The groundbreaking surgery was successful and John’s subsequent comeback lasted 14 years, setting such a precedent for future patients that the surgery bears his name.

PHOTOS: 2014 Notable Deaths

“He pitched a great game,” tweeted John. “He was a great surgeon but a better person. Many pitchers owe their lives to Dr. Frank Jobe.”

Dodgers President Stan Kasten was among those to pay tribute: “Frank Jobe is a Hall of Famer in every sense of the word.

“His dedication and professionalism in not only helping the Dodgers, but athletes around the world is unparalleled.

“He was a medical giant and pioneer and many athletes in the past and the future can always thank Frank for finding a way to continue their careers.”

A.J. Burnett, Kerry Wood, John Smoltz, Joe Nathan and Stephen Strasburg are among the pitchers who have undergone the surgery.

(Reporting By Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

Recent Headlines

in Sports

This week’s top sports shots

AP491836413688

A look at some of the biggest hits and best scores this week in sports.

in Entertainment

Coming soon: The Mustache Hall of Fame

burtreynolds

There are halls of fame for everything from baseball to rock 'n' roll, so why not those with a hairy upper lip?

in Music

Pink Floyd warns album ‘not for iTunes generation’

pinkfloyd

David Gilmour has warned the band's younger fans they might not enjoy the upcoming album.

in Sports

This weekend’s sports schedule

mississippi

A complete look at this weekend's sports schedule.

in Entertainment

Inspiration for ‘Harry Potter’ nemesis revealed

harrypotter

J.K. Rowling says the much-hated character Dolores Umbridge is based on a teacher to whom she took an instant dislike.