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10th Oldest Living MLB Player, Alex Monchak, Receives Knee Replacement

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Stephanie Petta
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April 03, 2012

Bradenton, FL – Former Philadelphia Phillies shortstop, Alex Monchak, is ready to leave the in the Inpatient Rehabilitation Center at Blake Medical Center after a total knee replacement, performed by Dr. Alan Valadie.  At age 95, Monchak is recognized as the 10th oldest living major league ballplayer.

After only four days in the hotel-like Joint Care Center following his surgery, Monchak was ready to begin more intensive therapy at Blake’s newly remodeled Rehabilitation Center.

Monchak says the secret to aging well is to stay active and not give up if you have a condition that’s limiting, like joint pain, “Once you stop moving, you’ll have problems,” he explains. After a few weeks in rehabilitation, Mr. Monchak is walking easily with a walker and says he’s looking forward to getting the all clear from Dr. Valadie to start dancing again. “I enjoy anything with movement in the legs, but dancing is one of the better ones,” he said with a smile. In the meantime, he’s enjoying the freedom of being able to move easily again.

“I’d been treating Mr. Monchak for a few years with injections and exercise therapy,” explains Dr. Alan Valadie, an orthopaedic surgeon with Coastal Orthopedics and medical director of the Joint Care Center at Blake Medical Center, “but he reached a point where he couldn’t enjoy his usual activities, like travel, because of the pain.” At 95 years old, Monchak is older than most knee replacement recipients, but his vitality made him a good candidate for knee replacement.  “I carefully evaluate each patient for appropriateness before any procedure,” explains Valadie, “Mr. Monchak is very healthy and active, besides what had become debilitating knee pain, so despite his age, he was a great candidate for the surgery.”

About Alex Monchak

A native ofBayonne, New Jersey, Monchak was one of many major leaguers who saw his baseball career interrupted by a stint in the army duringWorld War II.  Following his MLB career, Monchak became aMinor Leaguemanagerfrom 1949 to 1961, acting as a player/manager through 1956, and winning four championship titles. He later served as ascoutand instructor in theCalifornia Angels, Chicago White Sox,Oakland Athletics,Pittsburgh PiratesandAtlanta Braves. In 1979, Monchak was with the Pittsburg Pirates when they won the World Series earning him a coveted World Series Ring. Monchak is still active with the MLB family, attending reunion events with other former players

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