SAN FRANCISCO -- Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Rafael Furcal suffered a broken thumb sliding headfirst into third base during Monday night's game with the San Francisco Giants. He is expected to be placed on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday, and while club officials didn't want to offer a prognosis until after Furcal meets with a hand specialist in Los Angeles, injuries of this nature typically take four to six weeks to heal.
Furcal left the game after the bottom of the sixth inning and immediately had the thumb X-rayed at AT&T Park. That X-ray revealed the fracture.
Furcal actually hinted at retirement, but that seemed to be nothing more than an emotional reaction to having received the bad news.
"I'm thinking about retiring if I can't get back to being healthy," said Furcal, who has a history of back injuries and missed a month each last season with injuries to his lower back and right thigh. "I was feeling so good with my back, and now I break my finger."
Furcal hurt himself when he slid headfirst into the bag stealing third base in the top of the fifth, then played two more innings in the field before leaving.
Furcal already was dealing with soreness in his left wrist that had kept him out of the lineup for the previous two games, but that had subsided enough to allow him to return against the Giants. Furcal suffered that injury on a checked swing during last week's two-game series against the Colorado Rockies.
"It's bad,'' an obviously frustrated Furcal said. "I'm trying to get back in there after being out for two days, and as soon as I come back, I break my finger."
The Dodgers will announce a corresponding roster move on Tuesday. The most obvious candidate to be recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque is longtime infield prospect Ivan DeJesus Jr., who began the season in the majors, went hitless in seven at-bats with five strikeouts, then was optioned to Albuquerque last Tuesday night to clear a roster spot for third baseman Casey Blake, who was coming off the 15-day DL.
The stolen base was Furcal's first of the season, and he might have gotten help from third base umpire Todd Tichenor. The throw from Giants catcher Buster Posey clearly beat Furcal to the bag, and televised replays appeared to show third baseman Pablo Sandoval tagging Furcal on the left forearm before Furcal's left hand touched the bag.
Furcal, the Dodgers' leadoff hitter, is batting just .192 for the season after going 0-for-2 with a walk and a run scored against the Giants.
Tony Jackson covers the Dodgers for ESPNLosAngeles.com. Follow him on Twitter.