Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier left Sunday’s game with a right thumb sprain after sliding head first into second base. At the time the extent of the injury was unknown and he was considered day-to-day. Not anymore: he’s gotta go under the knife.
Turns out that Kiermaier tore a ligament in his right thumb and the necessary operation is going to put him on the shelf for 8-12 weeks. Some combination of Johnny Field, Carlos Gomez, and Mallex Smith will cover center field between now and July, in all likelihood. All obviously represent defensive falloffs from Kiermaier, but then again most center fielders are.
Kiermaier wasn’t hitting well in the early going of the season, but he’s a career .260/.317/.426 hitter (106 OPS+). He’ll be missed by the Rays.