- MLB Playoffs 2002 - Infielder's finger spiked in post-ALDS celebration

Monday, October 7
Infielder's finger spiked in post-ALDS celebration

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- Twins utility infielder Denny Hocking will miss the AL Championship Series against Anaheim after injuring the middle finger on his throwing hand during a postgame celebration.

Denny Hocking

Infielder David Lamb will take Hocking's place on the roster. In another move, the Twins will insert right-hander Bob Wells in the bullpen in place of Tony Fiore.

Moments after Hocking caught the final out in Sunday's 5-4 victory over Oakland in Game 5 of the AL Division Series, the Twins piled on each other in the middle of the field.

A teammate, whom Hocking believed was Jacque Jones, stepped on the middle finger of Hocking's right hand, splitting the nail in two places.

Jones wasn't so sure about the story.

"If Denny says I stepped on his hand, I stepped on his hand," Jones said.

Wearing a splint on his finger Monday morning, Hocking was disappointed that he will miss the best-of-seven series against the Angels, the team he rooted for as a teenager growing up in nearby Torrance.

"Just when you think everything is going your way, this game brings you back to reality," said Hocking, expected to be available for the World Series if the Twins advance.

Hocking, starting in place of Luis Rivas on Sunday, had two hits and knocked in Minnesota's first run.

"It's just a son of a gun that something like that had to happen," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.

The Twins open the AL Championship Series at home Tuesday.

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