Alex Avila Injury: Updates on Tigers Catcher's Knee
Detroit Tigers catcher Alex Avila was driven away early from Game 5 of the ALCS with a knee injury Thursday night.
The team's official Twitter feed announced the details:
Alex Avila left tonight's game with a left knee patellar tendon strain. #Tigers he is day-to-day.— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) October 18, 2013
The catcher will play in Game 6.
From Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports:
Leyland: Avila will play tonight.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) October 19, 2013
UPDATE: Friday, Oct. 18
From MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez:
Leyland on the possibility of Victor Martinez catching in Game 6, allowing Miggy to DH and Avila to sit: "That has been thought about."— Alden Gonzalez (@Alden_Gonzalez) October 18, 2013
More Leyland on V-Mart catching: "I don't think that's going to happen, but it would be an option if Alex is not able to play." #Tigers— Alden Gonzalez (@Alden_Gonzalez) October 18, 2013
According to a report from The Sporting News, Avila expects to play in Game 6 of the ALCS.
"I should be fine," he said. "I tried to stay out there, but I just didn't have any mobility back there. It was hurting pretty good, so we decided to get me out and see how it feels in a couple days."
Gillian van Stratt of mlive.com added more from the catcher:
"Treatment?" Avila said when asked how he plans to recover quickly. "Some strong pain killers and I should be, most likely, I'm planning on playing on Saturday."
Avila also knows exactly what it will take to play through this type of strain.
"Obviously, (Friday) will tell me a lot but I've had this injury before in 2011 and I've dealt with it on and off over the last three years, so I'm familiar with it," he said. "My knee just, my foot just kind of got stuck there and just kind of twisted weird or hyperextended weird and I strained that tendon."
Among several other things, the big blow came in the top of the second inning when he was involved in a massive collision at the plate with Boston Red Sox catcher David Ross (getting the tagout on Ross in the process).
Later, Avila, who missed several games in August with a concussion, took a foul tip off his facemask and was replaced by Brayan Pena in the top of the fourth.
The 26-year-old catcher hit .227/.317/.376 this regular season with 11 home runs and 47 RBI in 102 games. He was hitting just .192 through his first nine postseason contests, but he delivered a big home run and three RBI before Boston's comeback in Game 2.
Although Avila has taken quite the punishment in the last couple of games—he was also hit by a pitch and fouled a ball off his foot on Wednesday—it wouldn't be surprising if the tough-as-nails catcher played the crucial Game 6 on Saturday.
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