Looks like Marco Scutaro can return to baseball sooner than most were expecting after he took a pitch to his pinky finger Tuesday night. But he has a crucial choice to make. No, this isn’t some Ronnie Lott-type business where amputation is being discussed.
It’s much less grisly than that, but appearance is still weighing heavily in his decision. That is: help out the team and play but live with a deformed pinky for-ev-er, or go on the DL for an extended period and not have a finger that looks like it could be a future carnival attraction.
Officially, the second baseman has been diagnosed with mallet finger. It’s caused by tendon damage, which the Giants feared Tuesday night, and leaves the afflicted unable to extend their finger completely.
Here’s the play that Scutaro was injured on. Remember Ryan Vogelsong?
Scutaro saw a hand specialist on Wednesday, and here was a gist of what he was told, per Andrew Baggarly:
Scutaro was told that surgery was not required and the specialist did not rule out playing once the pain and swelling subsides in a couple days. But the usual treatment options – complete immobilization in a splint, or the insertion of a pin — would not work if Scutaro tries to play.
The pin, especially, wouldn’t apply because Scutaro would run the risk of snapping it while playing, such as sliding into a base. [...]
If Scutaro doesn’t keep the finger straight for at least four to six weeks, it would stay that way permanently.
“I want to play but I also want to have a good finger after I’m done playing,” he said, smiling. “I don’t want to leave with my finger like this. We’ll try to figure something out where I can play with my finger straight.”
Somewhere Torry Holt is like, “This is even a decision?”