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Angels' Peter Bourjos has a fracture below right wrist

Center fielder, who had just come off the disabled list, is headed back to it after suffering the injury Saturday when hit by a pitch.

June 30, 2013|By Mike DiGiovanna
  • Angels center fielder Peter Bourjos is hit with a pitch during the fourth inning of the team's 7-2 victory over the Houston Astros on Saturday.
Angels center fielder Peter Bourjos is hit with a pitch during the fourth… (Bob Levey / Getty Images )

HOUSTON — X-rays showed a nondisplaced fracture of a bone just below Peter Bourjos' right wrist, an injury that will sideline the speedy center fielder for at least two to three weeks.

Bourjos, who sat out 40 games in May and June because of a left hamstring strain and was slowed last week by a bruised left thumb, suffered the injury when he was hit by a pitch Saturday.

Doctors told Bourjos he can play when he can tolerate the pain and that hitting and throwing won't exacerbate the injury. The only way it can get worse, Bourjos said, is if he is "smoked" by a pitch in the same spot.

"You never want to hear this news. When I looked up 'fracture' on the Internet, I saw six to eight weeks" for recovery time, Bourjos said. "So, it could have been a lot worse. We have three off days in July and the All-Star break, so I won't miss as many games."

The Angels will miss Bourjos, who has been highly productive, batting .326 with a .385 on-base percentage in 40 games and playing superb defense.

"This is the best baseball Peter has played in his life," Manager Mike Scioscia said. "He's made adjustments, and he's seen enough of the league the last couple of years to really get comfortable. I think he's ready in his career to take off in a lot of areas such as stealing bases and hitting more at the top of the lineup.

"Being slowed with some physical issues when your confidence is this high is very frustrating. It's going to take some time to get over this hurdle, but there's a lot of baseball left, and I know Pete wants to be in the middle of what we're doing."

Bourjos, whose wrist was in a brace Sunday, will go on the disabled list. Mike Trout will move from left field back to center field, and J.B. Shuck will return to left.

With three left-handed-hitting outfielders, the Angels are expected to call up recently signed right-handed-hitting outfielder Collin Cowgill from triple A on Tuesday.

Day of rest

Trout, who started the team's first 81 games, playing all but seven of 735 innings and hitting .315 with a .392 OBP, .545 slugging percentage, 13 home runs, 52 runs batted in and 20 stolen bases, got his first day off.

The outfielder has been nursing a tight right hamstring, "but you wouldn't notice it by watching him," Scioscia said. "This is more of a proactive, precautionary decision … that, coupled with an off day Monday, can help him move forward."

Free pass

When Trout was intentionally walked to load the bases for Albert Pujols in the eighth inning Friday night, it marked the second time this season but only the third time since the start of 2003 that a player was intentionally walked ahead of Pujols, a three-time National League most valuable player with St. Louis.

"He's one of the best hitters in the game. Wouldn't you do the same thing?" said Pujols, who is batting .249. "It probably won't be the last time they do that."

Twitter: @MikeDiGiovanna

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