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Angels' Hamilton leaves with thumb injury

The SportsXchange

SEATTLE -- Josh Hamilton could have been in position to play the part of hero on Tuesday night, but he wasn't available when the game was on the line in the ninth inning and was on his way to undergo X-rays an hour later.

The Los Angeles Angels' outfielder hurt his thumb while sliding into first base in the seventh inning and couldn't grip a bat by the ninth. The timing couldn't have been worse, seeing as how Hamilton's No. 5 spot in the batting order came up with two runners on and nobody out in a game the Angels were trailing 5-3 to Seattle.

Hamilton played left field in Tuesday's eighth inning but told manager Mike Scioscia as he came off the field that his thumb was bothering him.

"He was having trouble gripping a bat," Scioscia said after the 5-3 loss to Seattle. "It's pretty swollen right now."

Even before the injury, Hamilton had cooled off from his red-hot pace of the past week. He went 0-for-3 on a night when the Angels' bats shut down after a three-run first inning. Los Angeles has now lost four times in as many games with the Mariners, but the bigger concern involves Hamilton's thumb.

"We'll keep our fingers crossed," Scioscia said.
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