Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
What was once an injury that would hopefully get better as the result of simple rest has now officially become an issue. At one point the Rockies were hoping to manage the injury to Carlos Gonzalez‘s right middle finger so that they would not lose their star outfielder for the remainder of this season. Now things are bad enough they have to consider the best course of action so that he is right before the beginning of next season.
"Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez will likely undergo surgery to fix the torn ligament in his right middle finger after 10 weeks of rest failed to heal the injury, he told The Denver Post in an exclusive interview.“Gonzalez said Sunday that he will travel to Cleveland to visit a hand specialist Thursday. If surgery is recommended, which a top Arizona physician advised on Sunday, then Gonzalez will have the procedure done either later this month or immediately following the season. He’s leaning heavily toward surgery.”"
When CarGo was initially able to stay in the lineup, even relegated to being a slap hitter, it was hard to imagine that this was such a serious injury or that we would still be talking about it now. That turned into a conversation about CarGo needing to grip the bat differently, and now we are talking about a complicated surgery that will require 6-8 weeks of rehab.
Finger rehab. Think about that. It sounds awful.
Here is how CarGo described the decision:
"I know I have to make some adjustments, but I don’t want to completely change who I am as a hitter. I swing a certain way. I don’t choke up and hit singles. That’s not me…“…I didn’t want to have surgery, but my finger isn’t allowing me to swing. I have had a lot of exams, MRIs, and it’s not stronger. I really think I will have the surgery. It’s my best option to get it better.”"
And that’s going to be the biggest issue moving forward. CarGo reasserted himself as one of the biggest threats in all of baseball in the first half of 2013. Besides the fact that he is one of the best outfielders in the game, has one of the strongest arms, and stole 21 bases, it is his power that sets him apart. He led the NL in home runs for a long stretch and he was finally hitting for power on the road.
If the Rockies want CarGo to be at the center of their plans for success moving forward, they need to hope that this finger injury doesn’t negatively affect his ability to hit for power.