Astros’ Jose Altuve undergoes thumb surgery, out at least two months

Houston Astros star second baseman Jose Altuve underwent surgery on Wednesday for a broken right thumb, an injury that occurred when he was hit by a pitch on Saturday while playing for Venezuela in the quarterfinals of the World Baseball Classic against the United States.

Astros general manager Dana Brown told reporters Wednesday that Altuve won’t be able to “return to baseball activity” for two months, meaning his 2023 debut with the Astros will likely come long after. this date.

The Astros announcement that Altuve, 32, had surgery in Houston and will stay there to begin his rehabilitation, with only a week left in spring training. The Astros head there Sunday after their final Grapefruit League game in Florida, before playing a pair of exhibitions against their Triple-A team, the Sugar Land Space Cowboys, in Texas.

Altuve, an eight-time All-Star and American League MVP in 2017, hit .300 with 103 runs, 28 homers and 18 steals for the World Series champion Astros last season. Mauricio Dubón and David Hensley are the main candidates to replace Altuve at second base until he returns.

Altuve hit by throw, spell

Venezuelan Jose Altuve was drilled by a pitch and out of the game against the United States at the 2023 World Baseball Classic.

Altuve isn’t the only MLB star to be injured while playing the World Baseball Classic. Mets closest Edwin Díaz will miss the 2023 season with a torn patellar tendon in his right knee following an on-court celebration after closing out a WBC victory for Puerto Rico. Altuve’s Astros teammate Kyle Tucker is also day to day after hitting a foul ball in the ankle while at bat for Team USA in that same Saturday game against Venezuela.

The United States beat Venezuela 9-7 in that match and eventually advanced to the championship round before losing to Japan 3-2 on Tuesday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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