Houston Astros star Jose Altuve left Saturday night’s World Baseball Classic game after he took a pitch to the hand and the team fears he possibly broke his thumb. The team said Sunday he broke his right thumb.
Altuve, who was playing for Venezuela, suffered the injury in the 9-7 loss to the United States. Daniel Bard threw the pitch that hit Altuve in the fifth inning. The sinker was clocked at 95.9 mph.
The team said in a statement Altuve suffered a right thumb fracture.
“Astros second baseman Jose Altuve sustained a right thumb fracture after being hit by a pitch during last night’s World Baseball Classic game. As a result of the fracture, Altuve will undergo surgery on his right thumb in the upcoming days,” the team said Sunday.
“Following the surgery, the Astros will have an update on Altuve’s prognosis.”
A Houston athletic trainer told The Associated Press after the game there was fear Altuve may have broken his right thumb.
Altuve told reporters in Spanish after the game, “All is good.”
“It didn’t look good,” Venezuela manager Omar Lopez said Saturday after the game. “It took 10 seconds for Tomas Vera, my trainer, to get him out of the game. I said, `Oh, my God.’ We’ll see what happens. I started to pray right away for Jose, for the entire team. That was our momentum right here when we took the lead. And at some point, the whole dugout kind of died, like quiet, and we kind of pushed everybody to get up and move on.”
Lopez is the Astros’ first base coach.
Altuve’s teammate Ryan Pressly, a pitcher for the U.S. team, said he was worried for the star second baseman.
“I’m pretty concerned about Jose,” Pressly said. “He’s a big part of our lineup in Houston. Just on top of that, he’s an unbelievable teammate.”
Altuve’s injury came after New York Mets closer Edwin Diaz suffered a devastating knee injury that could cost him the season. Diaz was celebrating a victory.
“We know he has trouble with command, and the first thing that we said, just be patient at the plate. But I never thought that he was going to come up with a pitch inside, up and in, to Jose in that situation,” Lopez added. “Unfortunately, Jose wasn’t able to kind of recognize right way.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.