Alex Avila injury: HBP forces catcher from game

USA TODAY Sports

Preliminary X-rays were negative but he'll be examined further in Detroit.

Alex Avila left Sunday's game in the ninth inning after being hit by a pitch thrown by Brian Duensing. The pitch rode up to hit Avila on the left forearm, causing the Tigers' catcher to immediately go to one knee. Often enduring pain in his catcher's role, Avila seemed to be in a little more pain than normal after being hit.

Tigers manager Jim Leyland told the media after the game the injury occurred a little further up the arm than he first thought, and that preliminary X-rays came back negative. He added Avila will be examined further when the team arrives back in Detroit. (They're flying home tonight.)

Alex Avila told Fox Sports Detroit's Trevor Thompson the wrist "hurts pretty bad" but he'll see how it feels Monday.

Brayan Pena finished off the rest of the game for Detroit.

The left-handed hitting Avila was 2-for-3 with a run scored before leaving the game. Avila is hitting .172 with a .271 OBP and .288 slugging average this season. Generally known as a defensive-minded catcher who calls a good game and throws out runners, with a caught stealing percentage of 21 percent, he's struggled a bit in controlling the running game. (Standard warning about sharing the blame there with pitchers.)

Pena, a switch-hitting batter, would undoubtedly play a bigger role in the lineup if Avila were injured. He's batting .295/.323/.409. Bryan Holaday (a right-handed batter) seems the most likely candidate for a promotion from Triple-A Toledo.

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