Cuddyer bruises toe, but says it's fine

Cuddyer bruises toe, but says it's fine

Cuddyer bruises toe, but says it's fine
DENVER -- Outfielder Michael Cuddyer, the most consistent hitter among Rockies regulars, left Wednesday night's 8-4 victory over the Padres in the seventh inning with a bruised left big toe.

Cuddyer, hitting .370 with two home runs and a team-leading eight RBIs, suffered the injury when he fouled a pitch off his shoe, just two pitches before his two-run homer in the fifth inning off Padres left-handed starter Clayton Richard.

"We drained it, and I'll probably end up losing the nail, but it's better," Cuddyer said.

Manager Jim Tracy said if Cuddyer is still in pain Friday when the Rockies begin a three-game series in Milwaukee, the skipper could sit Cuddyer and allow him two days to rest. But Cuddyer said he expects to be ready.

With slumping shortstop Troy Tulowitzki out of Wednesday's lineup, Tracy moved Cuddyer up two spots to the cleanup spot. But most of the time, Cuddyer has been a key in the lower half of the order for the Rockies this season.

Behind Cuddyer are catchers Ramon Hernandez (.267, two homers and six RBIs) and Wilin Rosario (.263, one homer and four RBIs) in the seventh spot and third baseman Chris Nelson (.306, three doubles, four RBIs) in the eight-hole.

Cuddyer, who spent his entire 11-season career with the Twins before signing a three-year, $31.5 million contract with the Rockies during the offseason, said he keeps a simple approach and doesn't put pressure on himself.

"I've hit anywhere -- one year, I hit the whole year fourth, one year fifth, one year I hit the majority sixth," Cuddyer said. "If nobody's on base, your job is to get on base. If somebody's on base, your job is to knock them in. It doesn't matter if you're the leadoff hitter or the eight-hole hitter. In the National League, the eight-hole hitter is the only one who needs to change his approach depending on the situation, but for the most part, it doesn't matter."

Thomas Harding is a reporter for Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.