ST. PETERSBURG — Veteran reliever Jason Isringhausen may be done for the season due to upcoming Tommy John ligament replacement surgery — his second elbow procedure within a year — but his agent says the right-hander plans to pitch in the big leagues again.
"This is not a retirement sendoff," agent Dan Horwits said in a phone interview Monday.
An MRI exam Monday revealed Isringhausen, 36, suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament. Horwits said Isringhausen will have surgery next Tuesday and is hoping that after a 10- to 12-month rehab, he will be able to pitch somewhere by the middle of next season.
"Knowing Jason, in every surgery he's ever had, he's come back early, so I wouldn't put it past him," Horwits said. "You never know."
Isringhausen, who missed all of 1998 after ligament replacement surgery, immediately knew something was wrong when he threw a pitch in the ninth inning Saturday and pulled himself out.
Horwits said Isringhausen talked with his family and his longtime doctor in St. Louis — "who knows Jason's arm better than anybody" — before making the decision to try to return.
Isringhausen had battled back from an elbow surgery in September that ended his 2008 season with the Cardinals.
"He's actually okay; he was a little bit in shock when it happened and obviously disappointed because he had come back so far to where he was really feeling like he was turning a corner and ready to do it like he had before," Horwits said. "The initial shock was there and it's worn off."
Isringhausen, who is on the 60-day disabled list, hasn't been available for comment. Horwits said Isringhausen has "loved" his time with the Rays and it "felt like home," so when and if the two-time All Star is ready to pitch again, "(Rays executive vice president) Andrew (Friedman) will be the first person I call."
Isringhausen, who has 293 career saves, appeared in nine games for the Rays, going 0-1 with a 2.25 ERA.
Right-hander Winston Abreu, with 10 saves and a 1.41 ERA at Triple-A Durham, has been added to the roster.