There was possibly no surprise on this year's Texas Rangers squad bigger than Jeff Baker, the veteran part-timer/utility man who had the tendency to kill left-handed pitching but not much else.
In his first season with the Rangers this year, Baker was having a monster year as a part-time player before taking over briefly as a full-timer when Mitch Moreland went on the DL.
Then, disaster struck as Baker high-fived an unnamed teammate and bent his thumb back awkwardly on June 13. He hasn't played since and after a brief time of trying to stay off the disabled list, he went on it retroactively.
After taking a handful of swings in the batting cage on Tuesday, Baker went to see a hand specialist and received a second cortisone injection. Now, he'll wear a splint for a few more days and hope it does the trick and gets him back on the field.
"I’m kind of past the frustration of that," Baker told ESPN Dallas of having to go on the DL. "Now it’s just busting my tail and doing whatever I can with treatment and therapy. Our doctors are obviously doing everything they can."
Baker was on a tear before the injury, hitting nine home runs in just 82 at-bats for a lineup that is in search of anyone who can provide some consistent power not named Nelson Cruz or Adrian Beltre.