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Hellickson to miss start after elbow surgery

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - Tampa Bay Rays right-hander Jeremy Hellickson has undergone surgery on his pitching elbow and is expected to miss the first six-to-eight weeks of the season.

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The 2011 AL Rookie of the Year experienced discomfort in his elbow after beginning his offseason throwing program in December. He tried to work through it, but when it persisted during bullpen sessions in mid-January, Hellickson contacted the team trainer.

Arthroscopic surgery was performed last Wednesday. Hellickson plans to report to spring training this month, however he's not expected to rejoin the rotation until at least mid-May.

The 26-year-old went 12-10 with a career-high 5.17 ERA in 31 starts last season. In January, he agreed to a one-year deal worth $3,625,000, avoiding arbitration.

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