Baseball has a new entry for the annals of absurd injuries.
The Oakland A's placed starting pitcher Jesus Luzardo on the disabled list Sunday with a broken pinkie diagnosed after Saturday's start against the Baltimore Orioles. Did he suffer the injury fielding a line drive up the middle? No.
He did it playing a video game. And he pitched through it before realizing that something was significantly wrong.
Manager Bob Melvin explained the situation to reporters on Sunday.
A's manager Bob Melvin explains how Jesus Luzardo broke his pinky finger…
The way he did it: playing video games.
— Stadium (@Stadium) May 2, 2021
"So, before the game he was playing a video game and accidentally bumped his hand on the desk as he was playing the game," Melvin said. "He came in, was a little bit sore, training staff checked him out. We threw him in the cage before he went out there, watched him warm up.
"He was comfortable pitching. The training staff was comfortable with him pitching. After the game, we got an X-ray, and there was a hairline in the pinkie finger."
The injury is to Luzardo's pitching hand. He allowed five hits, three walks and six runs (three earned) in three innings of Saturday's 8-4 loss. He's probably glad to have an excuse for the poor outing. His recovery timetable isn't yet clear.
Melvin's explanation leaves some unanswered questions. What game was Luzardo playing? And who in the clubhouse was he losing to that prompted him to "bump his hand on the desk" so hard that he broke a bone?
Luzardo's mishap certainly isn't the first bizarre injury in baseball history. Cody Bellinger dislocated his shoulder during a home run celebration during last year's World Series. A's pitcher Shawn Kelley sliced his thumb open with a knife while washing dishes in 2018. Texas Rangers pitcher Martin Perez fractured his non-throwing elbow in 2018 when he said that a bull startled him and caused him to fall down. Perez said he later killed and ate that bull.
So there are certainly more serious and more bizarre injuries than Luzardo's. But his is a worthy entry to the catalogue.
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