Orioles manager Lee Mazzilli wasn't sure what encouraging words to offer center fielder Luis Matos after seeing Matos' mangled right ring finger late Tuesday night.
"I went over and gave him a hug. Man, when I saw his hand like that ... " Mazzilli said, "because I feel for the kid. In this case, he was down."
Matos, who was batting .289 and was second on the team with seven stolen bases, broke the finger while attempting to bunt in the eighth inning of Tuesday's 6-4 loss to the Minnesota Twins.
He was placed on the 15-day disabled list yesterday and will miss at least six weeks. It's the fourth time in five years the 26-year-old has lost a chunk of his season due to injury.
"This kid came back from his injury last year. He came a long way, and he really made major contributions to the club this year," Mazzilli said. "And to see that kid go down like that and see what he had, that's a big blow."
After Matos' finger was trapped between Jesse Crain's fastball and the bat, his fingernail was ripped and bent backward. At Johns Hopkins Bayview Hospital, a "minor procedure" was performed to suture the nail to the skin, according to team doctor Charles Silberstein.
The club is hoping the finger will heal on its own. If not, possibilities include temporarily grafting the broken ring finger to his middle finger or surgically repairing the ring finger.
Surgery would mean a longer stay on the disabled list, but the Orioles are hopeful that will not be necessary.
"Anything is possible, but we are not leaning in that direction at this point," team vice president Mike Flanagan said.