Cleveland Pitcher Zach Plesac Fractured Thumb 'Aggressively' Taking Off Shirt

Blake SchusterContributor IMay 25, 2021

CLEVELAND, OH - MAY 23: Cleveland Indians pitcher Zach Plesac (34) delivers a pitch to the plate during the first inning of the Major League Baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians on May 23, 2021, at Progressive Field in Cleveland, OH. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Cleveland starter Zach Plesac suffered a non-displaced fracture in his right thumb and will be placed on the injured list, manager Terry Francona told reporters Tuesday.

Ryan Lewis @ByRyanLewis

Zach Plesac is heading to the injured list, per Tito. <br><br>He has a non-displaced fracture in his right thumb. He'll see Dr. Graham tomorrow.

Ryan Lewis @ByRyanLewis

From Tito, Plesac was "aggressively" taking off his shirt after his last outing and caught it on a chair. <br><br>So CLE now has to figure out how the team will piece together 3 situations: tomorrow's game, Friday's game (Plesac's spot) and Monday's doubleheader. Lots of moving parts.

The right-hander "aggressively" took off his shirt following his outing on May 23 and hit his hand on a nearby chair. Plesac lasted just 3.2 innings in an 8-5 loss to the Minnesota Twins, giving up five hits and five runs (three earned), raising his season ERA to 4.14 with a 1.02 WHIP.

It's unclear who could take Plesac's next two turns in the rotation. The 26-year-old was scheduled to take the mound on May 28 against the Toronto Blue Jays but won't be eligible to return from IL before June 8. 

Cleveland may also decide to send him to the minor leagues for a rehabilitation start following a prolonged layoff without throwing before returning him to the active roster. 

While the cause of the injury is a bit odd, it's far from the first weird baseball injury this season.

Atlanta Braves righty Huascar Ynoa punched a padded bench in the dugout on May 16, breaking his pitching hand during the moment of frustration. Before that, Oakland A's star Jesus Luzardo fractured his left pinkie finger by hitting his hand on a desk while playing video games in the clubhouse. 

Even Cleveland has seen stranger injuries with former starter Trevor Bauer slicing his right pinkie finger open while trying to repair a drone—during the 2016 American League Championship Series, no less. 

Plesac is just the latest entry into an infamous baseball category.

In the meantime, Cleveland (25-20) remains just 1.5 games back of the Chicago White Sox for first place in the AL Central and will need to find suitable pitching to replace Plesac to keep that gap from widening.