No fracture, but Scutaro fears tendon damage in little finger

Kruk & Kuip: 'The Giants felt they had to retaliate'

No fracture, but Scutaro fears tendon damage in little finger
June 11, 2013, 8:15 pm
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Marco Scutaro will be out of the lineup Wednesday and perhaps longer due to a pinkie injury. (CSN BAY AREA)

PITTSBURGH – Marco Scutaro’s X-rays were negative, which is positive. It means he didn’t fracture any bones when he was struck on the left hand by a pitch Tuesday night.

But the rest of it was all potentially bad news – and the Giants might be without their inspirational second baseman for an extended period. 

Scutaro could not straighten the tip of his left pinkie finger and feared tendon damage; the Giants expected to have more information after their No. 2 hitter sees a hand specialist on Wednesday.

“It’s all bent like a snake,” said Scutaro, who thought for sure he broke his finger when struck by a pitch from the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Tony Watson in the seventh inning of an 8-2 loss at PNC Park. “It’s sore.”

Scutaro dislocated the same finger earlier in his career but said this injury was different. Trainers attempted to straighten the finger but it wasn’t as simple as popping it back into place. Scutaro said trainers told him that if the tendons were ruptured, the finger wouldn’t stay straight.

Unfortunately for Scutaro, he doesn’t play football and can’t just lop off the tip of his finger as Ronnie Lott so famously did.

Last year, Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia tore a ligament in his pinkie finger at the end of July and was able to play through the injury before having surgery in October. The procedure required that pins be inserted and remain for a month.

Ruptured tendons can be repaired through surgical means or through immobilization in a splint, for up to eight weeks. But the time frame for Scutaro is little more than guesswork at the moment.

Giants manager Bruce Bochy was only certain that Scutaro wouldn’t play on Wednesday, and that Tony Abreu would start at second base against Pirates left-hander Francisco Liriano.  Bochy and GM Brian Sabean will wait to make any roster moves or DL decisions until after they get an update from the hand specialist.

"The best we can hope for now is he wakes up tomorrow and can straighten it out and feel good," Bochy said. "I know it's hurting him right now. We've got to see what's going on with this."

The Giants already are missing third baseman Pablo Sandoval, who was placed on the disabled list earlier in the day because of a strained left foot. Joaquin Arias is the starting third baseman in the interim.

And Angel Pagan remains on the DL with a slow hamstring recovery, and won’t be activated on Thursday when he’s eligible to return.

Scutaro might be the hardest to replace of the bunch. He entered Tuesday fifth in the National League with a .332 average and his 26 multi-hit games were the most in the NL. Since he was acquired by the Giants in July of last season, Scutaro’s 165 hits are the second most in the majors, just behind Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera (166).

Scutaro also is hitting .306 with runners in scoring position and .400 (8 for 20) with RISP and two outs.

"He's such a pivotal player to our lineup," Tim Lincecum said. "He gets all those hits. He plays great defense. Let's just hope it's not worse than what they're saying."