The Story of Trevor: Sprained Right Thumb, Headed to IL, Rodgers Called Up

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The Rockies extended their winning streak against the D-backs to a club-record-tying seven in a row in a 6-4 victory at Chase Field.

That, however, isn't the whole story.

Shortstop Trevor Story injured his right thumb when he slid into second base, attempting to stretch a single into a double. Story came out of the game, and X-rays were negative.

The Rockies were cautious. They placed him on the Injured List prior to Thursday's game against the Diamondbacks with what was called a sprained right thumb, although they were waiting for complete details on a series of tests he underwent Thursday, including an MRI.

Pat Valaika started at shortstop in Thursday's game against the Diamondbacks, but Brendan Rodgers, the No. 1 ranked prospect in the organization, was recalled from AAA Albuquerque. Rodgers, the third player selected in the 2009 draft and first high school player drafted that year, has received time in the minor leagues at second base and third base in the Rockies program that looks to create versatility among players.

Rodgers, however, is a shortstop and figures to get the bulk of the playing time.

In a perfect world, Story would be ready to return to the lineup at the end of the 10-day minimum for the IL.

What the Rockies can't forget, however, is Story's rookie season of 2017. He led National League shortstops that year with 81 RBI and ranked second with 27 home runs, setting a National League record for a rookie shortstop.

But ... and it's a big but ... He played in only 94 games.

The NL Rookie of the Month that April, joining Fernando Valenzuela as the only rookies to be selected NL Player of the Week in the first week of a season, he also was the NL Player of the Week for July 18-24. A week later, though, he was an observer. Sliding into second base on a stolen base attempt against the Mets at Citi Park on July 30, 2016, Story tore ligaments in his left thumb, requiring surgery.

The initial x-rays were negative, but an MRI the next day showed the torn liagments.

Black said the injury is “a different type of jam” than the one Story experienced in 2016.

Story, however, said the injury on Wednesday brought back memories of what happened in 2016.

"It's hard to tell," Story said of the severity of the injury, "but personally, I'm always nervous if you have to get an MRI because you never know. "

He, however, said he was hopeful that tests on Thursday would provide good news.

“It’s too early to tell,” he said. “It just feels like I jammed my thumb a good bit. It’s tough to put words on it right now, or talk about what could be, but we will definitely know more (Thursday). As of right now, it’s jammed and that’s how we’re treating it.”

What the Rockies do know is Story is a key part of their team, both in the field and at the plate. He has moved into the No. 2 spot in the lineup this season, giving the Rockies a dynamic offensive impact at the top of the lineup with Story, a right-handed hitter, behind leadoff hitter Charlie Blackmon.

And then, depending on the opposing starting pitcher, either Nolan Arenado or David Dahl hit third with Arenado hitting cleanup when he isn't hitting third.

For the season, Story is hitting .294 with 17 home runs and 48 RBI. But that's in 72 games -- one as a pinch-hitter, one hitting third and 20 hitting fourth before manager Bud Black settled on the alignment that has Story in the No. 2 slot. Even with the late move into hitting second, the Gold Glove shortstop ranks third among NL No. 2 hitters in RBI, runs creted and on-base percentage. He is fifth in slugging percentrage and home runs, and sixth in batting average.

Rodgers spent four weeks with the Rockies, sharing the second base role with Ryan McMahan, who emerged as the everyday second baseman. Rodgers, who was sent down last Friday, made only one start at shortstop with the Rockies, and three other appearances in a late-inning situation at shortstop. He started 14 games at second base.

While Rodgers hit .246 in his big-leageu debut, he is hitting .350 at Triple-A Albuqeurque, where he has nine home runs and 21 RIB to go wtih a 1.035 OPS in 37 games.