10:50 p.m. EDT update: X-rays were negative on Ramirez’s thumb, and he’s considered day-to-day with a bruise.
Hanley Ramirez had to come out of Saturday’s game against the Rockies after three innings with a right thumb injury.
Ramirez wasn’t in any obvious pain initially after grounding out into third, but once he returned to the dugout, he was in obvious pain and shaking his right hand. After a few minutes, he tried gripping a ball and a bat to see if he could continue, but he didn’t take his position in the fourth.
Making the incident particularly scary is that it’s the same thumb Ramirez injured on a head-first slide in the World Baseball Classic last year. He suffered a torn ligament then and needed surgery, which sidelined him for 5 1/2 weeks.
If Ramirez requires another DL trip this year, it will be interesting to see what the Dodgers do. Dee Gordon has settled in nicely at second base, but he’s a natural shortstop, and Cuban defector Alex Guerrero has hit .424/.525/.818 in his first 10 games in Triple-A, striking out just once in 33 at-bats. Calling Guerrero up to play second and shifting Gordon to short would be a possibility.
The Angels signed Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani for a $2.3 million signing bonus last weekend. They may have damaged goods on their hands. Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that Ohtani underwent a physical that revealed a first-degree sprain of his ulnar collateral ligament. As a result, he got a platelet-rich plasma injection on October 20. This was made known to teams after Ohtani entered MLB’s posting system, so it wasn’t like the Angels went into this blind.
Ohtani’s report said, “Although partial damage of UCL in deep layer of his right UCL exists, he is able to continue full baseball participation with sufficient elbow care program.” It also said Ohtani “will most likely be available to start his throwing program approximately a month from the PRP.”
Passan notes that the report also mentioned that a “small free body” floats in Ohtani’s elbow near his UCL.
Ohtani isn’t without other injuries. He battled hamstring and ankle issues throughout 2017 and underwent right ankle surgery back in October. Thankfully for the Angels, this diagnosis is about as good as it could be considering the circumstances. However, if Ohtani does exacerbate his UCL issue, he may ultimately need Tommy John surgery at some point, which would take him out of action for at least a year.