Rays' Kiermaier to undergo thumb surgery

Rays' Kiermaier to undergo thumb surgery

The Tampa Bay Rays have placed Kevin Kiermaier on the 10-day disabled list due to a thumb injury.

Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier is expected to miss 8-12 weeks after undergoing surgery to fix a torn ligament in his right thumb, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Kiermaier suffered the injury while sliding headfirst into second base Sunday against the Philadelphia Phillies.

UPDATE, 5:02: Cash said Smith will get the bulk of the playing time in center in Kiermaier's absence, which sounds as much about giving him a chance to show what he can do as not taxing Gomez.

"We're going to do things to stay positive, continue working", Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "We are all exhausted of KK getting hurt and there's nothing he can do about".

The Rays have recalled right-hander Chih-Wei Hu from Durham to take Kiermaier's place on the active roster. It was a typical KK play.

This marks the third consecutive year in which Kiermaier will miss extended time during the regular season. The center fielder was sliding into second base when it happened and could be seen immediately getting up and shaking his hand out after. Last season, for instance, he missed 61 games with a fractured right hip that he also injured on a slide. The guy bobbles the ball.

Kiermaier, batting.163 with one RBI, missed 48 games in 2016 after breaking his left wrist diving for a ball.

Tampa Bay is off to tough start, entering Monday with a 3-12 record.

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