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Has Byung Ho Park’s wrist been the problem?

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Korean slugger Byung Ho Park got off to a powerful start in the majors, but things quickly went south and landed him in the minor leagues. Could his wrist be the thing holding him back?

Minnesota Twins v New York Yankees Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

If you are wondering why you haven’t heard anything lately about Byung Ho Park, that’s because he was finally placed on the triple-A DL last week with "tendinitis in his right wrist". Park got off to a powerful start in the majors, hitting 12 home runs in his first 62 games, but was eventually demoted to AAA in early July. He’s hit just .224/.297/.526 in his time in the minors.

In light of the extreme power Park initially showed, one has to question: How much of Park’s struggles been due to this mysterious wrist problem? Although he was finally placed on the DL last week, rumors about this wrist thing have been trickling through the media for some time. Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press noticed Park icing his wrist after games back in June, and asked Paul Molitor if it had been contributing to Park’s problems. "I don’t see a connection there," Molitor told Berardino "I know his wrist was a little sore, but he’s been pretty adamant, at least when I’ve asked him if it’s been any kind of a hindrance, and he says it’s good. He says it gets loose and it’s fine. He takes his game swings and he’s fine."

"It doesn’t bother me at all," Park claimed.

He still had to sit out multiple games in July due to the wrist, all while still claiming it was nothing major. "Just one of the things every position player goes through," he told the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle.

But is it? The Korean Times reported in late July that Park has been battling this wrist injury since spring training. And now Charley Walters is reporting this wrist thing could require surgery. We still don’t even know exactly what this wrist injury is! Perhaps that’s because doctors don’t exactly know what it is either. Despite what people would like to think, medicine is often not an exact science, but something here seems to be off.

If it is a wrist injury that has been the biggest thing holding Park back, that might be good news. He’s showed he has the power that was advertised, and if the wrist injury really has been the biggest problem, that’s much better news than a lack of ability.

We will have to wait and see.