Bale punches door, breaks left hand

Bale punches door, breaks left hand

CLEVELAND -- Don't look for Royals left-hander John Bale to come off the disabled list anytime soon, and manager Trey Hillman isn't happy about it.

Not that Hillman wanted to rush Bale, who'd been nursing fatigue in his left shoulder, back into action; he wasn't. Hillman did think the 33-year-old Bale had looked good in his bullpen session here Friday afternoon.

But somewhere between the ballpark that night and the ride back to Progressive Field the next day, Bale did something that might best be described as "stupid."

"When he went back to the hotel, he was frustrated," Hillman said Sunday. "His arm wasn't feeling as good as he thought it was. He got upset, and he punched a door."

As often happens in such fits of temper, the door won. And the result of its victory: Bale fractured his left hand.

On Sunday, the Royals sent Bale back to Kansas City, where their medical staff will reevaluate Bale's left hand on Monday and then prescribe a course of action.

Hillman said this latest injury will keep Bale's name on the disabled list.

"I don't know how long he's going to be out," he said. "But he'll be out for a while."

The injury, however, caught Hillman off-guard. He had said a day earlier that Bale had rebounded nicely from his bullpen session Friday, but Hillman found out about the injury, which Bale had tried to hide, later in the day.

"Very unfortunate," Hillman said. "He's embarrassed about it."

Embarrassment wasn't an emotion Hillman shared. Anger, however, might be.

"I'm not pleased," Hillman said. "Players [have to] think before they do things. They've got to think about how it's going to affect the rest of their team -- how it's going to affect their individual possibilities of being able to perform.

"It's very unfortunate. I hope there's something salvageable for him. But we'll just have to wait and see where it goes."

Justice B. Hill is a senior writer for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.