Josh Hamilton's stay on the disabled list was extended Monday, as the Rangers announced that he'll miss another 4-6 weeks after undergoing surgery to repair a partially torn abdominal muscle. Hamilton had been hoping to avoid going under the knife, but decided otherwise when the pain persisted following his trip to the DL last week and a second opinion confirmed the need for surgery.
Hamilton being out has Texas going with David Murphy in left field, Marlon Byrd in center field, and Nelson Cruz in right field, as manager Ron Washington opted for that alignment in seven of the past eight games. That outfield leaves Andruw Jones and Hank Blalock in a fairly strict platoon at designated hitter, with Blalock getting the starts against right-handed pitching.
While the Rangers try to hold onto first place in the AL West sans Hamilton, here are some other notes from around baseball …
* Along with losing Hamilton, the Rangers also discovered Monday that Brandon McCarthy will be sidelined indefinitely with a stress fracture in his shoulder. He'll be completely shut down for several weeks and a similar injury in 2007 kept him out for over a month. McCarthy went 5-2 with a 4.92 ERA and 44/26 K/BB ratio in 11 starts, but this marks his fourth trip to the disabled list in three seasons.
Doug Mathis was called up from Triple-A to step in for McCarthy on Tuesday, but he lacks fantasy upside and ultimately the rotation spot will probably be filled by Derek Holland once Matt Harrison returns from the DL later this week. Holland is just 1-3 with a 6.54 ERA in 31.2 innings, but the 22-year-old southpaw has plenty of potential after posting a 2.68 ERA and 245/64 K/BB ratio in the minors.
* Jeremy Bonderman came off the disabled list and Jose Contreras was recalled from the minors Monday, and they faced off with dramatically different results as the Game 2 matchup of a doubleheader in Chicago. Contreras had gone 0-5 with an 8.19 ERA prior to being demoted to Triple-A last month, but shut out Detroit for eight innings while allowing just one hit and one walk.
Meanwhile, Bonderman struggled mightily in his 2009 debut as Chicago knocked him around for six runs in four innings, including three homers. He struck out just one batter and reports of decreased velocity while rehabbing proved accurate as Bonderman initially threw 88-91 miles per hour before dropping to 87-89 late. For comparison, his average fastball was 92.7 mph from 2003-2008.
AL Quick Hits: After undergoing an eye exam Monday, David Ortiz was informed that he has 20-20 vision and given drops for dryness … Adam Lind homered twice Monday and is now 14-for-29 (.483) with three homers and five doubles in seven games this month … Detroit sent Ryan Perry back to the minors Monday after the 2008 first-round pick walked 19 batters in 23 innings … Evan Longoria (hamstring) returned to the lineup Monday after missing nearly a week's worth of starts … J.D. Drew (shoulder) is hoping to rejoin the lineup Tuesday after getting a cortisone shot … Aaron Cunningham left Monday's game after being hit on the helmet by a pitch, although he stayed in long enough to score from first base on a double … Jacoby Ellsbury is day-to-day with a sprained shoulder after an MRI exam revealed no structural damage … Joe Crede was scratched from Monday's lineup with lingering calf soreness.
NL Quick Hits: Justin Upton sat out Monday's game after injuring his shoulder on a swing Sunday night … Sean West shut out the Giants for eight innings Monday to pick up his first MLB victory … Khalil Greene is slated to begin a minor-league rehab assignment at Triple-A this week as he attempts to come back from social anxiety disorder … Starting on short rest following his 300th win, Randy Johnson took his 165th loss by allowing three runs in five innings Monday … Clint Barmes collected two hits Monday for his sixth straight multi-hit effort … Jose Valverde (calf) is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment Wednesday at Double-A … After blowing a save Sunday, Chad Qualls said that his forearm tightness will probably linger … Out since May 24 with a hamstring injury, Chris Iannetta is expected to come off the shelf Tuesday … Jason Marquis improbably became the NL's first eight-game winner by allowing two runs in 6.2 innings Monday.