Dodgers' Ethier has fractured bone in right pinkie

SAN DIEGO — Major league batting leader Andre Ethier of the Los Angeles Dodgers has a fractured bone at the end of his right pinkie and isn't sure how long he'll be sidelined.

Ethier sustained the injury during batting practice Saturday and sat out the Dodgers' 4-1 win against the San Diego Padres. He'll be examined by a hand specialist in Los Angeles on Sunday.

"It's a big thing," Ethier said. "It could be a couple of days, it could be longer than that. I'm a little disappointed in the fact that it's something this small."

Ethier leads the majors with a .392 batting average and 38 RBIs, and is tied for the NL lead with 11 homers.

The left-handed Ethier said he was taking swings in the indoor batting cage before Saturday's game when he pinched his right pinkie against his bat. He took a few swings during BP on the field and finally told hitting coach Don Mattingly that it wasn't feeling right. He said it bothered him playing catch.


Ethier said at first he thought the finger was sprained or bruised.

"I sat around for an hour and that's when it started throbbing a little bit. I thought, 'Damn, I sprained it pretty bad this time, or bruised it.' Then I went out there and I felt it kind of blow up a little bit more. I guess that's when a little doubt came into my mind — am I going to be able to hold the bat right? And I went out there and tried to hold the bat and it wasn't feeling right so that's when I told Donnie, 'I don't think something's right with my finger right now.' "

Manager Joe Torre said the injury was "something that certainly you don't want to have happen, but again, the season doesn't give you a chance to breathe. You just move on."

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