Chicago Cubs catcher Dave Rader was injured July 26th when he collided with third baseman Steve Ontiveros in their game versus the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. Rader was hurt in the fourth inning when LA outfielder Dusty Baker, batting with one out and two men on, fouled a pitch from Dave Roberts high into foul territory between home and third; while Ontiveros prepared to make the catch, Rader slammed into the third-sacker at full force, apparently not hearing or completely disregarding Ontiveros’ call to stay away. Both players were knocked off their feet, and the ball hit foul ground untouched, but surprisingly, Rader was the only one hurt, suffering an injury to his right hand that may put him out of action for two weeks. Backup catcher Larry Cox took Rader’s place behind the plate, going 1-for-4 with a run scored as the Cubs dumped the Dodgers 8-1.
Also injured, one day earlier on the 25th, was White Sox starting pitcher Rich Wortham, who was stricken with a pinched nerve in his left shoulder in the sixth inning of a game between the Sox and Brewers at Comiskey Park, on a pitch that Robin Yount had knocked for a base hit to open the frame. Wortham left the game before facing the next batter, and was replaced by Ron Schueler, who pitched four more scoreless innings in leading the Sox to a 2-0 shutout win. Wortham was placed on the 30-day disabled list the following morning.
Returning from injuries today were catcher Bruce Bochy of the Astros and infielder Larry Milbourne of the Mariners, both of whom went on the 30-day DL in 1999, and were thus out of action for fourteen years. Also coming back today, though from much shorter stints, were Triple Crown candidate Reggie Smith of the Dodgers (9 games) and outfielder Lyman Bostock of the Angels (8 games).