CHICAGO -- Chris Getz certainly didn't figure to play a featured role for the White Sox during the team's final 20-game push to the playoffs. That's not to say the fleet-footed infielder wasn't in the picture at all.
In a stretch where the adage "every run counts" becomes an on-field truism, Getz would have served as a pinch-runner for manager Ozzie Guillen and a possible defensive replacement at second base, if dictated by game maneuvers. As of Tuesday morning, Getz will join Carlos Quentin and even Jose Contreras in a talented but injured cheering section on the White Sox bench.
"Yeah, we'll be there in the back," said Getz with a smile after learning he had suffered a couple of small fractures in his left wrist, bringing to a close his first foray into the Major Leagues.
The injury first came about on Aug. 31, the day before Getz was going to be recalled to the Majors, when he was struck by a pitch from Durham's Wade Davis leading off the fourth inning of Triple-A Charlotte's 10-2 loss. Getz immediately left the game and had the wrist X-rayed in Charlotte, but the results came back negative in regard to any sort of break.
After joining the White Sox in Cleveland, Getz continued to rehab the left wrist -- and he twice entered games as a pinch-runner -- but he noticed the improvement had reached a plateau and the pain was not going away.
"If it's a bruise or even a bone bruise, it gets better each day," Getz said. "I knew something wasn't right."
The wrist was X-rayed again, coupled with an examination on Monday, and the conclusion was reached that Getz had suffered the fractures. With Getz out of commission, the White Sox added Jason Bourgeois to play Getz's same sort of late-game reserve role.
"I was surprised and a little disappointed, because we didn't know that from the beginning," said Guillen of Getz. "We are going to need this kid. We tried to talk the doctor out of it. [We asked,] 'Can we put a cast or something [on it],' because one run can mean a lot down the stretch. One run can win a game or lose a game. But it is what it is.
"It's bad news, but we've got to make the best of it. It's disappointing for him, too, because all of a sudden you come to the big leagues and can't play. It's not a good thing for him."
Although Getz hasn't really discussed any winter ball options with the team as of yet, he believes this injury should be fully healed by October and he'll be ready to build on a strong 2008 showing that just might have put him in contention for a 2009 starting job at second base. For now, Getz will try to learn what he can while watching from the side.
"You can still pick up a lot in terms of development from just watching at this level," Getz said.
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.