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Indians lose outfielder Shin-Soo Choo for 8-10 weeks after thumb surgery

Jun 28, 2011, 2:47 PM EDT

Cleveland Indians v San Francisco Giants Getty Images

Cleveland has fallen out of first place by going 9-16 this month and now the Indians will likely be without Shin-Soo Choo until September.

Choo suffered a broken left thumb when he was hit by a Jonathan Sanchez pitch Friday and underwent surgery today, with Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reporting that the right fielder is expected to miss 8-10 weeks.

Eight weeks from now would have him returning in late August, so any kind of setback or slower than expected recovery could lead to Choo missing the remainder of the season. And of course even if he returns at the optimistic end of that timetable there’s no guarantee Choo will fare well with a surgically repaired thumb, particularly since he was hitting just .244 with a .687 OPS in 72 games before the plunking.

Choo hit .302 with an .897 OPS in his first three seasons in Cleveland, averaging 24 homers and 20 steals per 160 games along with standout defense in right field to stake his claim as one of baseball’s most underrated all-around players. He’ll likely be replaced by a platoon of Travis Buck and Austin Kearns.

  1. halladaysbicepts - Jun 28, 2011 at 2:52 PM

    Shin-Soo Choo, guess it’s time to get drunk tonight to celebrate your vacation. Just take a cab this time, buddy.

    • jjschiller - Jun 28, 2011 at 3:04 PM

      *drunkt

      Also.. Good one, buddy!

  2. drmonkeyarmy - Jun 28, 2011 at 3:19 PM

    Did Sanchez stare him down when he was leaving the field? That would be something that jackass would do. I hope Herndon smacks him in the leg with a sinker next time the Giants plays the Phillies.

  3. thumbsjohnson - Jun 28, 2011 at 5:10 PM

    Does Choo still have to serve the 4 week military service that is required for South Koreans? I believe athletes get an exemption for 4 weeks as opposed to 2 years…

    If so, maybe it would be smart to do it right after his rehab? Lump it all together.

    I don’t know anything on the subject so this question/comment is just a thought in the dark.

    • Utley's Hair - Jun 28, 2011 at 5:44 PM

      I believe his World Baseball Classic performance last year wiped out the military requirement completely—something about positive reflection on the country or something.

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