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Tampa Bay Rays place Kevin Kiermaier on disabled list with torn thumb ligament

Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier will miss up to three months with a torn ligament in his right thumb that requires surgery.

Kiermaier was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Monday and the Rays announced he could be sidelined until July recovering from his latest injury.

Mallex Smith and Carlos Gomez are candidates to see time in center field until Kiermaier is ready to return.

Kiermaier injured his thumb sliding headfirst into second base in the first inning of the Rays' 10-4 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday at Tropicana Field. As he dove into second base, Kiermaier's hand was caught on the ground and Kiermaier said his thumb "went in a weird angle."

The team took X-rays on Sunday and found no broken bones, but an MRI exam on Monday revealed Kiermaier has a torn ligament.

Injuries have become a chronic concern for the standout defensive center fielder. Kiermaier missed 48 games after fracturing his left wrist in 2016 and 61 games with a fractured right hip last season.