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June 14, 2013

High-five from hell puts Jeff Baker out of Rangers' lineup

Jeff Baker, the major-league leader in homers against left-handers, is out of the Rangers' lineup Friday against Toronto lefty Mark Buerhle because of an ill-fated high-five Thursday that resulted in a sprained right thumb.

Baker said he is unable to grip a bat or throw, and he and the Rangers are hoping that he can avoided the disabled list because of a pregame hand slap that caught Baker's thumb and bent it back to his wrist.

"Yesterday before the game an overexcited teammate gave me a high-five pregame, and it bent thumb from my hand back to my wrist," Baker said. "Hopefully I don’t have to get an MRI. ... I wasn’t happy about it. ... It stinks. ... It’s unfortunate, but it is what it is."

Manager Ron Washington fielded some snarky questions from the media, such as if he was going to ban high-fives and just who is the high-five coach. But while the injury rates as an all-timer, the fact is that one of the Rangers' best hitters of late is out.

"I wish it wouldn't have happened," Washington said. "It's things they do every day. It's just a weird occurrence."

Said general manager Jon Daniels: "When it rains, it pours."

-- Jeff Wilson

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