Venezuela’s José Altuve exits right after HBP to hand

The Astros and Venezuela may have lost the most in a extremely negative inning for Group USA. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/WBCI/MLB Photographs through Getty Pictures)

The 2023 Planet Baseball Classic may have a further significant injury on its ledger.

Houston Astros All-Star José Altuve, playing for Venezuela, exited his team’s game against the United States on Saturday right after taking a 96 mph fastball from pitcher Daniel Bard to the hand.

Altuve right away hit the ground right after the pitch produced speak to, and he was escorted off the field by a trainer whilst in clear discomfort. He was replaced at second base by Luis Rengifo of the Los Angeles Angels.

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal later reported there had been fears Altuve had broken his suitable thumb and the Astros would have additional info on Sunday.

The hit-by-pitch was the ugliest moment of an ugly inning by Bard, who opened the fifth with a stroll, single, wild pitch, HBP, wild pitch and stroll ahead of Group USA manager Mark DeRosa pulled him for Tampa Bay Rays reliever Jason Adam. By the time Bard exited, the bases had been loaded with no outs and a single run currently in.

Bard’s line got even worse right after he left, as Venezuela completed the inning major six-five right after trailing five-two.

The injury danger of playing in the Planet Baseball Classic has currently been a loud subject of conversation due to the fact New York Mets closer Edwin Díaz tore his patellar tendon whilst celebrating Puerto Rico’s victory at the finish of pool play. Díaz, final year’s NL Reliever of the Year, is anticipated to miss the whole MLB season.

Now, the Astros and Venezuela are each probably holding their breath on Altuve. The second baseman is coming off a championship-winning season with the Astros in which he hit .300/.387/.533 with 28 homers and 18 steals and earned his eighth All-Star nod, sixth Silver Slugger Award and a fifth-spot finish in AL MVP voting.

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