Houston Astros star Jose Altuve will require surgery after sustaining a fractured right thumb during a game in the World Baseball Classic, general manager Dana Brown announced Sunday.
The Astros said Sunday in a release that they will provide a prognosis for Altuve after he undergoes surgery in the upcoming days. Brown said there is no timetable for his return, however USA Today reported Altuve is expected to be sidelined 8-to-10 weeks with the injury.
Altuve was struck in the hand by a pitch in the fifth inning of Venezuela's 9-7 quarterfinal loss to Team USA on Saturday in Miami.
The All-Star second baseman immediately exited the game after being hit by an up-and-in fastball from Colorado Rockies right-hander Daniel Bard, who hit two batters and also threw two wild pitches.
"It's a massive blow," Brown said. "You can't replace a player like this this close to the season. These players don't exist. You just can't go out and replace this type of a player."
Altuve sustained the second major injury associated with this WBC tournament. New York Mets closer Edwin Diaz endured a full thickness tear of the patellar tendon in his right knee, an injury that will require surgery. Diaz is expected to miss the 2023 season.
Altuve, 32, is heading into his 13th season with the Astros. He is an eight-time All-Star, three-time batting champion, two-time World Series champion and the 2017 American League MVP.
He is a career .307 hitter with 192 home runs, 696 RBIs and 279 stolen bases in 1,578 games since making his Astros debut in 2011.
--Field Level Media