Catcher Iolana Akau (St. Louis School, Honolulu) chipped a bone at the bottom of his right thumb diving into second base, his coach confirmed. The injury happened Feb. 16 toward the end of a preseason game while Akau was stealing second.
"He's been in a soft cast," St. Louis head coach George Gusman said. "He's going to see the orthopedic guy today and is expected to be put in a hard cast."
Gusman said Akau went to the emergency room after the game and X-rays revealed the chip. The doctor there gave a timetable of four to six weeks for it to heal. St. Louis only plays a schedule of 12 games so Akau isn't expected to be back for the regular season. St. Louis was in its sixth preseason game when the injury occurred.
"It's going to hurt us significantly," Gusman said. "Nobody will run when he's back there. He's been throwing guys out that are too far off first base. That's all going to change for us. He's been hitting the ball very well."
One of two Hawaii preps in the High School Top 100, Akau was ranked 97th and is committed to Hawaii. He is listed at 5-foot-11, 170 pounds, and stands out for his defense. He is quick and agile with good blocking and receiving skills. His arm is above average. He has a compact swing from the right side and scouts also like his leadership skills. Akau's Waipio Little League team (Waipahu, Hawaii) beat Mexico in the 2008 Little League World Series.
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