A look at the right thumb of Alex Rios can make a person grimace. That’s how badly swollen it is.
The injury led to a day off for the Texas Rangers’ right fielder Wednesday in the series finale at Safeco Field. Rios, though, seemed surprised that he wasn’t in the lineup.
“Sometimes it’s good to reconsider your thinking, and maybe a few days off would be beneficial,” he said.
The Rangers have no designs on shutting down Rios, as they have left fielder Shin-Soo Choo for surgery to remove a bone spur from his left elbow and right-hander Yu Darvish for mild elbow inflammation.
Rios doesn’t want that, even though the thumb has caused him to make adjustments in his swing that just aren’t working. He believes that the thumb injury developed as he made adjustments to compensate for his sprained right ankle.
“Those things have implications,” he said. “But even with that, I feel I can do a little and I want to be on the field.”
Manager Ron Washington said that he checks with Rios before every game, though he alone made the call to sit him against Seattle. But Washington will keep Rios in the lineup regularly.
“He’s a big part of my lineup,” Washington said. “He’s a part of this team, and he wants to be there for everyone. I think that’s admirable, and it shows young guys that sometimes when things aren’t the way you want them, you’ve got to figure out a way to get it done.”