The Los Angeles Dodgers have a new injury concern.
Hanley Ramirez, slated to be their Opening Day shortstop, left Tuesday’s World Baseball Classic championship game after five innings because of a jammed right thumb.
Ramirez returned to the field — wearing a splint — for the celebration following the Dominican Republic’s 3-0 victory over Puerto Rico. At one point, he waved a small Dominican flag with the injured hand.
Ramirez, playing third base, sustained the injury while diving for Jesus Feliciano’s third-inning single. Veteran Miguel Tejada replaced Ramirez to begin the top of the sixth inning.
In what could be an encouraging sign for the Dodgers, Ramirez told Dominican manager Tony Peña that he wanted to remain in the game. But Peña pulled him for what an official said were “precautionary reasons.”
Ramirez went 1-for-2 Tuesday, as the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico played on a cool, drizzly night at AT&T Park. Depending on how quickly Ramirez returns to the Dodgers, his injury could revive the ongoing debate over injury risks in the WBC.
The Dodgers could have done without the added worry, with Carl Crawford and Zack Greinke questionable for Opening Day and superstar Matt Kemp coming off shoulder surgery.