Blanks may be lost for season's balance
Impressive rookie outfielder suffered torn plantar fascia
SAN DIEGO -- Outfielder Kyle Blanks, the 22-year-old rookie who has impressed during his 54-game stint with the Padres, could be done for the season after it was discovered on Monday that he has a partial tear in his right plantar fascia.
Blanks, hitting .250 with 10 home runs and 22 RBIs, aggravated a previous injury to his plantar fascia, the connective tissue area which supports the arch of the foot, as he rounded the bases after he hit a home run Friday against the Florida Marlins.
The Padres said Monday that Blanks will be fitted for a cast and will be re-evaluated after a week. The team hasn't said one way or the other if or when Blanks will return. How he heals will determine that.
"I think anything is possible," Padres manager Bud Black said.
Blanks first injured the arch of his foot on Aug. 22 running the bases. He got one at-bat on Aug. 23, missed two games and then had an at-bat on Thursday. The last setback came the following day against Florida.
"It's the same sensation, but not quite as bad [as when he previously suffered the injury on Aug. 22] ... I already felt the worst I could feel," Blanks said before Monday's game against the Nationals. "It kind of sucks."
Blanks went on the disabled list on Saturday and would be eligible to return on Sept. 12. At that point, the Padres will have 19 remaining games in the regular season.
Blanks didn't want to concede the season on Monday. He's still holding out hope that he can return to build toward 2010, when he figures to play a significant role in the Padres plans.
"Ideally, I would like to play as soon as it's done [time on the disabled list]," Blanks said. "I would like to have it 100 percent instead of trying to fight through it."
Blanks, a first baseman by trade, has moved to the outfield after being promoted from Triple-A Portland because of two-time All-Star and Gold Glove Award winner Adrian Gonzalez. He has fared well in his 33 games in the outfield.
"I kind of got a good feel for what was going on," Blanks said when asked if he felt he did enough to put himself in the Padres plans for next season. "I would like to think so."
Blanks hit .282 with 12 home runs and 38 RBIs in 66 games with Portland before joining the Padres on June 19.
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.