SEATTLE (AP) — Josh Hamilton's attempt to beat out an infield grounder with a headfirst slide into first base landed him on the bench for up to two months.
The 2010 AL MVP was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday by the Los Angeles Angels with a torn ligament in his left thumb. He was hurt trying to hustle down the line and beat out a grounder in the seventh inning of Tuesday night's loss to Seattle. Hamilton was thrown out, but the consequences of his decision ended up being far greater.
"The news sucks. Anytime you play and you're playing hard and having fun, the last thing you want to do is do something that is going to cause you to miss time and maybe hurt your team in the long run," Hamilton said. "If I could see the future, obviously, I wouldn't do it."
Los Angeles said an MRI Wednesday revealed a complete tear of the thumb's ulnar collateral ligament. After initially saying hand and wrist specialist Dr. Steven Shin would operate at Kerlan-Jobe Orthopedics in Los Angeles, the Angels said Hamilton will be examined by Shin on Friday to determine whether surgery is needed.
Hamilton was placed on the 15-day disabled list, and outfielder J.B. Shuck was recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake. Hamilton said he believed it was just a jammed thumb, but when he tried throwing in the outfield between innings he knew something might be wrong.
Hamilton told manager Mike Scioscia to have someone pinch hit for him in the ninth. Ian Stewart batted for Hamilton and struck out with the potential tying run on base in a 5-3 loss.
"It's definitely unfortunate but I think as a team you have to be able to absorb and be deep enough to absorb injuries to players and Josh is a special talent who is off to a great start for us. We'll do our best to fill that void," Scioscia said. "Over the years, we've had a lot of our key players miss significant time, but we've been able to absorb it and move on. That's what we have to focus on doing now for the next six, eight weeks, whatever the time frame is going to end up being."
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