Hanley Ramirez, Dodger’s starting shortstop, was injured diving for a ground ball at third base during Tuesday night’s final of the World Baseball Classic.
On Wednesday, Ramirez received a MRI on his right thumb, and today the Dodgers learned that he is suffering from a ligament tear. Ramirez is to receive surgery Friday in Los Angeles by Dr. Steven Shin. He will have to keep him thumb immobil for three weeks, and if all things go well Ramirez is expected to return to competition in eight weeks, according to the club.
According to Ken Gurnick, MLB’s Dodger reporter, Ramirez explained that the injury occurred as he dove to his left for a ground ball, his right thumb sticking in the infield grass and bending backward away from his hand, tearing the ligament. Doctors told Ramirez that the surgery had a “99 percent” chance of success.
Sports Illustrated reported that, Ramirez didn’t think it was this bad, “maybe because I was warm.” He even batted and hit a single before coming out of the game as the pain increased.
Don Mattingly, planning to have Ramirez start at shortstop this year, had hoped he would not play third base in the tournament. A former All-Star shortstop, Ramirez was moved to third base by the Marlins, and the Dodgers have been determined to move him back to shortstop, according to Gurnick’s report.
“They’re going from a guy coming out of a big game, to a guy who also stayed in the game and had a single,” Mattingly said. “We were concerned enough to get an MRI. He’s coming out of a game, a pretty big game – guys don’t want to come out of those.”
Ramirez made sure to comment on his injury, as he knew it would support allegations against stars playing in the Classic.
“It could have happened anywhere,” Ramirez said. “It could happen at Spring Training, in BP. Everything is not negative in life. You have to stay positive.
“This is my main thing, the Los Angeles Dodgers, even though I played in the WBC, represented my country. It was an honor. At the same time, this is my team. This is not easy. It’s going to be tough, but what can we do? There are a lot of guys that can do a lot of damage on this team.”
Dodgers plan to use either Dee Gordon or Luis Cruz at shortstop in the interim, depending on what they show between now and Opening Day.