Hamilton leaves early with jammed left thumb

Hamilton leaves early with jammed left thumb

CINCINNATI -- Reds center fielder Billy Hamilton exited Tuesday's 3-1 loss to the Giants before the fifth inning because of a jammed left thumb, the club revealed. Hamilton was replaced by Tyler Holt after going 0-for-2.

Left thumb issues have bugged Hamilton since he first hurt it April 15 while making a spectacular leaping catch to rob the Cardinals' Matt Carpenter of a home run at Busch Stadium.

"He got jammed with a pitch in his first at-bat and it just blew up," Reds manager Bryan Price said.

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Hamilton banged the thumb again the following week and missed a few games while his hand was immobilized in a soft cast.

"It gets swollen and makes it really hard for him to swing the bat," Price said. "He'll probably be able to do something [Wednesday], I would imagine. He was pretty much done for the night after that happened and was unusable as an offensive piece."

Entering Tuesday, Hamilton had a three-game hitting streak and hits in six of his previous seven games. He is batting .215 in 23 games this season.

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.