Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton went on the disabled list Tuesday with an abdominal strain that could sideline him from two weeks to two months.
Hamilton had a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and was examined by Dr. John Preskitt. Rangers assistant general manager Thad Levine said what had been a groin strain had migrated to the abdomen.
“I don’t think he felt comfortable at this juncture saying definitively no surgery or definitely he’ll be back in two weeks,” Levine said.
The injury is much like a sports hernia, and Levine said a second opinion is needed before deciding on surgery.
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“I think that still represents worst-case scenario, in which we are very hopeful it’s not going to come (to) fruition,” Levine said. “They said in a week or two he could show significant improvement, so I think there’s a chance that the DL stint will be exactly what he needs. That probably in this instance represents the better-case scenario.”
Levine said rest and anti-inflammatory medication might alleviate the injury, sustained May 17 when Hamilton crashed into an outfield wall while making a leaping catch against the Los Angeles Angels.
Levine said it also was possible Hamilton would undergo the sports hernia surgery that Dr. Ulrike Muschaweck has performed on many athletes in Munich, Germany – a procedure Levine said may now be available in the United States. Many soccer players have returned to practice from that operation within two weeks.
“We want to learn a little more about that,” Levine said.
Hamilton went on the DL retroactive to Monday, and outfielder Brandon Boggs was recalled from Oklahoma City of the Pacific Coast League.
Hamilton is hitting .240 with six homers and 24 RBI after a breakout season in 2008 (.304 with 32 homers and 130 RBI).
Tiger Stadium’s time is up
What remains of historic Tiger Stadium will be demolished after the city of Detroit rejected a $33.4 million proposal by a nonprofit group to preserve and renovate the old ballpark.
The Economic Development Corp. board voted 7-1 to authorize the complete demolition of the stadium.
Tiger Stadium opened in 1912 as Navin Field. The Tigers departed for nearby Comerica Park after the 1999 season.
The first demolition began at the end of June 2008, and much of the stadium was torn down by fall.
Detroit Economic Growth Corp. vice president Waymon Guillebeaux said the stadium will be leveled as soon as a contract is negotiated with a contractor.
“We cannot have a partially demolished building remaining indefinitely,” Guillebeaux said.
Gary Gillette, a leader of the group trying to save the stadium, blasted the vote as “shortsighted” and vowed to fight.
Brewers’ bullpen in flux
One day after Milwaukee reliever Jorge Julio allowed five runs while facing six batters in the sixth inning of Milwaukee’s 7-4 loss to the Florida Marlins, the Brewers released the right-hander.
Julio entered Monday night’s game in Miami with Milwaukee leading 4-2. He gave up two hits, hit two batters, walked one and another reached on an error. Signed to a one-year, $950,000 deal in the offseason, Julio was let go after going 1-1 with a 7.79 ERA in 15 appearances.
Also, former Green River Community College right-hander David Riske underwent reconstructive surgery on his right elbow. Dr. Lewis Yocum performed the Tommy John surgery in Los Angeles.
Riske, expected to be a key player and potential closer when he signed a three-year, $13 million deal with the Brewers before the 2008 season, will be sidelined the rest of this year and likely some or all of 2010.
Bad news for Nationals
Washington Nationals catcher Jesus Flores has been diagnosed with a stress fracture of a bone in his right shoulder and his season is in jeopardy.
Flores injured his shoulder when he was hit with a foul ball in the May 9 game at Arizona, and was put on the 15-day disabled list on May 15.
As Flores intensified his preparation to return, he felt more pain. The team sent him to Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala., on Monday.
“It’s going to push back his rehabilitation greatly,” Washington acting general manager Mike Rizzo said. “It’ll probably be a minimum of three months – possibly … for the rest of the season.”
Meanwhile, the Nationals, who have the worst ERA (5.69) and record (13-36) in the major leagues, fired pitching coach Randy St. Claire and promoted Steve McCatty from Triple-A Syracuse to replace him.
Volquez back on DL
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Edinson Volquez went back on the 15-day disabled list with tendinitis in his right elbow, a day after he lasted only one inning in his first start off the DL.
Reds medical director Dr. Timothy Kremchek, who examined Volquez in Cincinnati, said the right-hander will not throw for seven to 10 days. Manager Dusty Baker said Kremchek told him the pitcher will be “fine, big time.”
Ichiro among top vote-getters
Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro Suzuki was among the top three outfielders in fan voting for the AL All-Star spots.
Joining Ichiro in the outfielder were Boston’s Jason Bay and Texas’ Hamilton.
Tampa Bay third baseman Evan Longoria leads all AL players in fan voting with 1,036,071 votes. New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter drew the second-most votes in the AL, followed by Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler and Minnesota catcher Joe Mauer.
The All-Star Game is July 14 in St. Louis. Starters and reserves will be announced July 5.
The Minnesota Twins are missing third baseman Joe Crede (swollen knee) and right fielder Michael Cuddyer (strained right index finger) due to injuries. … The Atlanta Braves have optioned rookie center fielder Jordan Schafer, hitting .204 with two homers and eight RBI, to Triple-A Gwinnett and called up Gregor Blanco. … New York Mets center fielder Carlos Beltran was out for the third consecutive game because of a stomach virus.