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Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Cleveland Indians’ Zach Plesac breaks right thumb ripping off shirt, Terry Francona says

Add the latest entry to the book chronicling bizarre baseball injuries.

Cleveland manager Terry Francona said Tuesday the team will place right-handed starter Zach Plesac on the injured list because of a non-displaced fracture of his right thumb. The 26-year-old suffered the injury while “rather aggressively ripping off his shirt” and catching his thumb on a chair in the locker room Sunday.

Plesac started Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Twins at Progressive Field, allowing five runs in 3⅔ innings. When the swelling in Plesac’s thumb failed to subside on Monday, he underwent an X-ray that revealed the fracture.

“He called [athletic trainer] James Quinlan, and James called me,” Francona said. “It was pretty swollen yesterday. ... As you can imagine, our wheels started to turn.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 26, 2021 at 11:07 AM | 32 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: zach plesac

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   1. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: May 26, 2021 at 11:56 AM (#6020921)
"Chippendales" is now in play for Cleveland's new team name.
   2. My name is Votto, and I love to get Moppo Posted: May 26, 2021 at 12:57 PM (#6020933)
I was thinking Hulk Hogan, but yeah. At least he didn't iron his shirt while he was still wearing it.
   3. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: May 26, 2021 at 12:59 PM (#6020934)
Do athletes end up with the dumbest ways to get injured, or is it simply that they are the only ones about whom we hear about dumb injuries?

Wasn't it John Smoltz who burned himself trying to iron a shirt while he was wearing it? And anytime I hear about a pitcher injuring his pitching hand punching a wall or something after a crappy outing, I can't help but think that is dumber than about anything everyday people could do. Think about it: You are a pitcher who has a window of 3-15 years or something to potentially make untold millions throwing a baseball for a living, knowing it is a profession where you are always a pitch away from Tommy John surgery or torn labrum. And you give up five runs in 3 1/3 innings or something, get upset about it, and punch the sh*t out of a ball...with your throwing hand. That would be like a professional singer being upset about missing some notes at a concert, and in response...straining their vocal chords. Except at least they probably can sing for 50 years if they want...a pitcher's got one of the tightest windows in pro sports to be at the top of their game, with some of the highest injury risk. I just think it is almost unimaginably stupid.
   4. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: May 26, 2021 at 01:34 PM (#6020941)
That's what he gets for not buying the shirt in the first place, dammit.
   5. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: May 26, 2021 at 01:40 PM (#6020943)
Do athletes end up with the dumbest ways to get injured, or is it simply that they are the only ones about whom we hear about dumb injuries?


I suspect it's a little of both with the latter being more prevalent. I think the dumb injuries is probably a function of finely tuned athletes having more to injure. In other words, you can't pull fat. The other aspect is that we just don't hear about dumb injuries people suffer. Speaking for myself I have done the following;

- Broken a toe running to answer the door
- Knocked myself unconscious with a Q-Tip
- Missed two days of work after straining my neck and going on painkillers when I turned too quickly to see something on TV
- Pretty regularly get infected fingernails from biting my nails too closely (no one gives a #### about this but I absolutely would be scratched from my start if I was an MLB pitcher)
- Gave myself a pretty impressive cut on my chest closing a car door
- Wiped out and scratched the bejeezus out of my ankle and shin running up a friend's walkway.

Note: All of these happened between the ages of 18 and 30. This wasn't a dumbass 7 year old.
   6. Harmon "Thread Killer" Microbrew Posted: May 26, 2021 at 01:49 PM (#6020946)
Knocked myself unconscious with a Q-Tip


Footage

   7. GregD Posted: May 26, 2021 at 01:59 PM (#6020948)
but also they lie to avoid saying they punched a wall, right?

I would not want to bet on this story being true
   8. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: May 26, 2021 at 02:00 PM (#6020950)
That would have been more dignified. Long story short, cleaning my ears, got in nice and deep, scrambled my equilibrium, out like a light. On the plus side, for my exam at the doctor the next morning he noted that my ears were the cleanest he'd ever seen.
   9. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: May 26, 2021 at 02:00 PM (#6020951)
Keep in mind that some of these "injuries" are players and teams wanting to keep the actual injuries private. How many of you have actually hurt your hand by closing a car door on it?
   10. My name is Votto, and I love to get Moppo Posted: May 26, 2021 at 02:01 PM (#6020952)
It reminds me of the Johnny Bench quote when Fisk passed him for HRs by a catcher: "I thought about trying to make a comeback until I pulled a muscle while vacuuming".
   11. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: May 26, 2021 at 02:23 PM (#6020959)

I used to chuckle at stories of players getting injured while sneezing or whatever, but earlier this year I threw out my back getting out of a rental car. If I were a pro athlete, I would have missed at least a week of play. But as a normal human being it didn't prevent me from doing my job, so nobody had to hear about it except for my wife.
   12. RJ in TO Posted: May 26, 2021 at 02:28 PM (#6020960)
How many of you have actually hurt your hand by closing a car door on it?

Me, if by hand, you actually mean head.
   13. Jobu is silent on the changeup Posted: May 26, 2021 at 03:06 PM (#6020970)
Plesac was also one of the COVID-protocol-scoffing Tribe pitchers last year. He's climbing the knucklehead rankings.
   14. The Duke Posted: May 26, 2021 at 03:41 PM (#6020979)
At my grandmothers funeral my brother in law and were talking with some people at my car. The car door was open and my hand was gripping the section the structural part of car that goes from the hood to the roof where the door closes. For whatever reason my brother in law closes the door while I’m in conversation with someone. Now best case is 4 broken fingers and worst case is 4 fingertips get chopped off

Nothing happened. The door closed completely on my hand (and latched). It didn’t hurt. We all stopped and looked at this in amazement. No pain, no nothing. He opens the door, I pulled my hand out - fine.

Weirdest non-injury I’ve ever had
   15. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: May 26, 2021 at 03:48 PM (#6020982)
Nothing happened. The door closed completely on my hand (and latched). It didn’t hurt. We all stopped and looked at this in amazement. No pain, no nothing. He opens the door, I pulled my hand out - fine.
Ah, you must have been driving an Adobe.
   16. bunyon Posted: May 26, 2021 at 04:19 PM (#6020989)
No one has ever punched a wall after carefully considering the situation and balancing pro and con. What matters isn't how smart you are but how hot-tempered. It is, obviously, really stupid. But smart people do stupid stuff when they don't think about what they're doing.
   17. Itchy Row Posted: May 26, 2021 at 04:40 PM (#6020996)
When I was about eight, I had a few shirts that had snaps instead of buttons and one shirt that had actual buttons. I got used to tearing the snap shirts open and eventually I tore the button shirt open, throwing the buttons all over my room. I was so embarrassed, I threw the shirt away in a neighbor's trash. I can tell the story now because it's no longer the stupidest shirt removal thing ever.
   18. Howie Menckel Posted: May 26, 2021 at 04:42 PM (#6020998)
since the topic came up...

I once ran toward an "end zone" parking lot lunging for what would have been a touchdown catch in touch football - but for the nun's car that I hit at full speed just before the catch was to be made. never saw it coming, and bounced back about 6 to 8 feet and landed on the ground in a daze. broke my collarbone.

I broke a finger playing "giant volleyball" - meaning, at 6-foot-tall I somehow was the shortest person in this game. went up for a block and - it ended badly.

broke another one when my brother kicked me (frankly, I deserved it for taunting him).

broke another due to a bad hop at first base, just minutes after hearing about Hank Aaron hitting his 714th home run.

while one of my fingers was in a sling, I used a pole to try to nudge a basketball out from behind a backboard. pole slipped. 2 stitches in my upper lip.

as a preschooler, I walked into a moving swing on a swing set. 5 stitches on my cheek.

got "impaled" by a giant splinter - the neighbors had a new deck in the backyard, and someone forgot to sand the railings on the steps. 3 stitches between my thumb and forefinger.

was walking through a field of high grass when I saw an empty beer can, and I absentmindedly tried to kick it like a soccer ball. seemed odd that my foot got "stuck" on something, so I stopped and took my sneaker off. my white sock was crimson red - turns out there was a discarded glass windshield that you couldn't see because of the tall grass and it was at night. 12 stitches in my foot.

engaged in a high-speed chase on foot of my brother, and he got to the front door 2 seconds ahead of me. he just barely was able to lock the door in time. furious, I pounded the glass portion of the door. 10 stitches - and to this day, have a small scar on my wrist that could be mistaken for a rather tentative suicide attempt.

tried to make a "showoff catch" in co-ed softball while playing CF. I could tell that the 270-pound LF had misjudged it, so I decided I'd say nothing and the ball would go over his head - and into my glove, as I raced across triumphantly. did not occur to me that he might make a last-second desperate step backwards. we got entangled. no catch.

I landed on the ground, on my mitt hand, and thought, 'this isn't that bad.' a second or two later, down goes Frazier - er, 270-pound LF, right on top of me. ok, THAT was bad.

two outs in the top of the 9th when that "homer" was hit, so while I struggled to get my fingers back into the glove, I didn't want to seem like a prima donna and leave the field. I figured the next pitch would lead to an easy out, and my time in the field would be done.

you guessed correctly that the next pitch comes at me in CF like a heat-seeking missile. I was going to let the ball drop if possible, but the ball wasn't having it. I winced slightly making the catch. then we went out for food and drinks. woke up the next morning, and my hand was twice its normal size. turns out I had broken the 4th and 5th metacarpals.

once was in Aruba for a couple of days, using maybe a 50 SPF on my Irish skin. my half-Greek girlfriend was becoming - as she had warned - unrecognizably darker. frustrated to not even add a freckle to that point, I lay on a raft on a calm part of the ocean for about 20 minutes, SPF 0. by sundown my skin was as bright as a red traffic light. every application of aloe immediately disappeared under my skin for at least an hour.

a couple of years ago, I noticed a couple of my fingers looked kind of - well, gnarly. I wound up at a rheumatologist, who informed me that I had "severe osteoarthritis." I said, how could I have something "severe" that I didn't even know that I had. she pointed to those fingers, and told me that I had lost a lot of cartilage, and that the human body tends to be rather inefficient in regrowing bone to compensate - hence my hands looking like that of a retired bare-knuckle boxer. "the good news," she said, "is that you're done."

in February, I dropped my car keys between the seats and decided it would be a swell idea to plant my left foot on the floorboard and stretch for them. sprained ligaments in my knee - which became badly sprained ligaments two days later when, while walking barefoot at home, my "good foot" got caught in the carpet and my other leg got something like a lightning bolt through it. four weeks of physical therapy, three 90-minute sessions per week and it's... okay, I suppose.

to build on Post 14, not one of these incidents led to any pain. that one doctor gently informed me that the growth of bone as an adult is generally quite painful, often to the point of requiring painkillers during that phase. I said that DOES sound painful. "well, you missed it," she told me.

also have passed two kidney stones - one pretty small that I barely noticed, and the other that just felt like a tiny flick on my arm would feel (unfortunately, I didn't get to skip the 6 to 8 hours of weight-loss-inducing nausea in each case as the stone made its way around inside. and I do NOT want to get one large enough to test the outer limits of this condition).

good article in The New Yorker last year about a woman in the UK who was far more extreme than this (not kidding; she couldn't even feel emotions). article noted something like "this is sub-optimal from an evolutionary standpoint, because of the significant possibility of dying at a young age because a lack of pain leads to a lack of much-needed fear."

they got that part right!

I use an electric razor. just because it might not hurt if I accidentally slit my throat with a straight razor doesn't mean I might not bleed to death, after all. no power tools, either.

am fascinated by people who have never broken a bone, nor had stitches.

c'mon, everybody should get their uniform dirty once in a while. plus then you have stories to tell.

:)

in 8th grade, one of the girls picked me as the subject of her assigned report about "someone noteworthy" because of my various mishaps (though a number of these above were as an adult, of course). It took me like 10 years to realize, hey dumbass, you think it's possible she liked you?

well, youth is wasted on the young.
   19. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: May 26, 2021 at 04:44 PM (#6021001)
I can tell the story now because it's no longer the stupidest shirt removal thing ever.
Come on, that ship sailed with the first guy to reveal his green-and-yellow body paint at a Packers game in December when it's 2 degrees out.
   20. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: May 26, 2021 at 07:27 PM (#6021031)
How many of you have actually hurt your hand by closing a car door on it?


I once dislocated my thumb closing my car's trunk.
   21. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: May 26, 2021 at 10:46 PM (#6021057)
Long story short, cleaning my ears, got in nice and deep, scrambled my equilibrium, out like a light.


I've noted before that the closest I ever came to passing out in a doctor's office was about 35 years ago in Little Rock, when I went in with a complaint about one of my ears being water-clogged for probably weeks. Turned out a mosquito or something & crawled up the canal at one point & died. When she was working to extract it, piece by piece, I came fairly close to fainting. No doubt I was reacting to the mental rather than the physical sensation, but still.

(Actual baseball relevance -- the head of the clinic was a friend of local product Brooks Robinson.)

Around 15 years earlier, circa age 13, I kept experiencing pretty much the water-logged sensation & eventually wound up digging out, I believe using a pencil, a hunk of cotton that had been in my ear canal for god only knows how long, since I hadn't suffered chronic earaches since probably before puberty.

(More actual baseball relevance -- this excavation occurred while I was watching NBC Monday Night Baseball.)

Back then, at least, my ears were apparently my Achilles heel, as it were.
   22. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: May 26, 2021 at 11:02 PM (#6021059)
not one of these incidents led to any pain. that one doctor gently informed me that the growth of bone as an adult is generally quite painful, often to the point of requiring painkillers during that phase. I said that DOES sound painful. "well, you missed it," she told me.


When I went in for surgery some 6 years ago for an umbicular hernia mesh implant that quickly turned into excision of a couple of inches of dead bowel instead, the surgeon told me that not only could I have just not ever woken up one day because of sepsis or whatever, I also shouldn't have been able to even function with the attendant pain.

I was having (what was supposed to be) the procedure done in the first place because my GP recommended I consult the surgeon when I saw him because I'd been undergoing sufficient abdominal pain to miss a couple of days' work. It wasn't even remotely debilitating, though, & I just assumed I was undergoing one of my occasional bouts with a case of Crohn's disease that's very mild but every couple or so years decides to act up a bit. (This happened about a month ago, in fact,& lasted about a week -- twice as long as normal. Woohoo.)

   23. filihok Posted: May 26, 2021 at 11:26 PM (#6021062)
Dislocated my jaw while yawning.
   24. The Honorable Ardo Posted: May 26, 2021 at 11:36 PM (#6021064)
I can't rag on these guys. Once, in college, I made the responsible choice not to drink and drive - then made the less responsible choice to hop on my bicycle.

My trip ended in major reconstructive ankle surgery. Without modern medicine, I would've been crippled for life.
   25. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: May 27, 2021 at 12:02 AM (#6021069)
not one of these incidents led to any pain. that one doctor gently informed me that the growth of bone as an adult is generally quite painful, often to the point of requiring painkillers during that phase. I said that DOES sound painful. "well, you missed it," she told me.

My worst injury was a broken jaw suffered while playing pick-up basketball in my early 20s. This wasn't a dumb injury -- my chin connected with my friend's shoulder as I went up for a block, and...CRUNCH. Everyone on the court heard it and immediately knew it was a serious injury, but I didn't feel any pain. Other than the sound, I knew there was something wrong because I was spitting out pieces of my teeth -- two had basically been cleaved in half.

Thankfully another friend's dad was an oral surgeon and he met me at his office about an hour later (this was incredibly nice of him given it was a Sunday afternoon). I had to have some cosmetic dentistry done afterwards and could only eat soft foods for a couple of months, but it could have been much worse.

My dumbest injury was breaking a finger tripping over a deck chair while trying to catch a frisbee.
   26. Howie Menckel Posted: May 27, 2021 at 12:42 AM (#6021073)
When I went in for surgery some 6 years ago for an umbicular hernia


dammit, I missed mentioning my version of this.

I don't anything about hernias and I still don't wish to know anything.

but I had that surgery 5 or 6 years ago (the year that Wil Flores got traded to MIL and cried at Citi Field during the game and then he wasn't traded after all and... well, that whole trade deadline multi-day stretch was my rehab so it must be 2015).

apparently there is an easy version and a more complicated one. I go in there without a care in the world.

hours later, I wake up. turns out that when the surgeon went in to do the easy one, he realized he actually had to do the other one.

I hear the physician muttering, "what the hell? 14 years, and this has never happened before."

they have you come back in a week to check your progress. I noted some soreness for a few days, but said now I'm good.

on the way out, the receptionist or whomever asks you when you think you might be able to return to work. many visitors there do heavy lifting "on the job" and I've got the mug for it (dad was a firefighter, his dad a stone mason, brother-in-law construction worker, his son a solar panel roofer, etc). sort of a wink to take as much time as you like, and the union I guess has to respect the surgeon's office wishes.

I said, "um, how about today?" to return to work.
lady says, "first time I've ever heard that!"

it's a banal thing, really. there is zero courage or fortitude involved.

a childhood friend of mine is still a physical therapist. he said he regularly sees x-rays that make him wonder why this client describes so much pain, or really any (and sometimes same after an MRI as well). and other times, he can't believe that the person just walked into the room without a walker, given the bone-on-bone damage to one of their knees.

he saw the medicals once of a prominent NBA player BITD, and it was the talk of the hospital. player should have been on crutches, seemingly, yet played 40 minutes a night. I used to see him in postgame locker rooms. huge bag of ice on each knee, feet in buckets of ice. said he was fine. and then the next night, 40 more minutes.

pain sensors are very strange. too much of either extreme, not so good. but we play the hand we each are dealt.
   27. Itchy Row Posted: May 27, 2021 at 02:08 AM (#6021075)
I started to type “This discussion means Zach Plesac is one of us” and somehow lost and/or dislocated three fingers, at least one kidney, and a daughter.

Welcome aboard, Zach, before you kill us all.
   28. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: May 27, 2021 at 09:46 AM (#6021099)
All of my injuries were masculine injuries, sustained in masculine ways, with appropriate masculine reactions to them.
   29. Der-K's emotional investment is way up Posted: May 27, 2021 at 10:37 AM (#6021101)
How many of you have actually hurt your hand by closing a car door on it?

After a work lunch, someone else once closed a car door (that latched) on my finger - it was swollen and discolored for a few days, but ok. The "cool" part about it was that another coworker used it as an excuse to try his hand at animation, which proved a fun hobby for him.
--
"pain sensors are very strange."
my partner is a pain researcher and i feel like that about sums up her discipline (both the sensors and how we process pain). alternately, the models (she's mathy) around pathways and perception can get wild and wooly fast.
   30. CFBF's Results are Certified Posted: May 27, 2021 at 12:50 PM (#6021113)
For what it's worth, Smoltz has always indignantly denied the "ironed his shirt while he was still wearing it" story, and it seems at least pretty likely that it didn't happen.
   31. pikepredator Posted: May 27, 2021 at 03:07 PM (#6021147)
I have a friend who plays soccer who dislocated a toe pulling off a sock. This seems similar.

My best scar is almost 6" long up my forearm, quite prominent, and . . . came from a housecat. It could easily be a knife wound. But it's not.
   32. Howie Menckel Posted: May 27, 2021 at 03:48 PM (#6021152)
my partner is a pain researcher

tell us (ok, me, lol) more !

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