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Friday, March 07, 2008

Nomar, LaRoche Both Suffer Hand Impacts

Nomar Garciaparra was hit on the hand by a pitched ball, and Andy LaRoche fell on his wrist attempting to field a ball in today's exhibition game. Third base is about to get interesting.

Update: Both are headed for X-rays, but the team does not think either one is seriously injured.


Update 2: Tony Jackson says LaRoche has an injury to the "ulnar collateral ligament in his right thumb". Huh? The "ulnar collateral ligament" is in the elbow, right? Hah, apparently you also have one at the base of the hand; damage to it is sometimes called "gamekeeper's thumb" or "skier's thumb" depending on the injury.

The skier's thumb injury was described as an acute injury to the ulnar collateral ligament. When a skier falls with his or her hand caught in a ski pole, the thumb can be pulled away from the hand. Because of the shape of the ski pole, the thumb tends to get caught and significant stresses are placed on the ulnar collateral ligament. If the ulnar collateral ligament is pulled far enough, it will tear. While there are many ways to injure the ulnar collateral ligament, a skier's thumb is the proper eponym for an acute injury to the ligament.

The other injury is called a gamekeeper's thumb; this refers to a more chronic pattern of injury that leads to loosening of the ulnar ligament over time. The name comes from the European gamekeepers who would kill their game by grasping the head of the animal between their thumb and index finger to break its neck. Over time, the ulnar collateral ligament is stretched and would eventually cause problems. Again, gamekeeper's thumb is the proper eponym to describe chronic injuries to the ulnar collateral ligament.

So, they mean to tell me LaRoche could have gotten this injury by choking his chicken? Either way, LaRoche is expected to miss eight or more weeks.

Nomar is day-to-day, but sustained no serious injury.

Update 3: LaRoche will have surgery on the thumb, putting his return at 10 weeks out.

Update 4: LAT coverage.

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