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NAME: Brook Fordyce
TEAM: Chicago White Sox
POSITION: Catcher
INJURY: Broken Foot

OTHER ATHLETES AFFECTED

Football: Yancey Thigpen (Tennessee Titans); Basketball: Summer Erb (NC State Women); Hockey: Juha Ylonen (Phoenix Coyotes), Todd Reirden (St. Louis Blues)

HOW IT HAPPENED

Fordyce broke a bone in his left foot during an intrasquad game on February 29. He is expected to be sidelined 4-6 weeks. Fordyce said he felt a bone on the top of his foot crack when he tried running from first base to second on a pitch in the dirt. Fordyce was taken off the field on a cart, and X-rays revealed the break.

PLAYER BIO

Fordyce, who signed a $1.5 million, two-year contract with the White Sox on Nov. 17, is the team's No. 1 catcher. He was selected by the New York Mets in the third round of the 1989 free agent draft. After coming over in a trade from the Reds late last spring, the 29-year-old Fordyce played in 105 games with Chicago. He hit .297 last season, with nine homers and 49 RBI. He threw out 22% (17 of 78) of opposing base stealers.

WHAT'S A BROKEN FOOT?

This type of injury is usually caused by a fall or an object landing on the foot, but it could also happen if the foot is suddenly jarred. A break in one or more bones of the foot, including the injury known as a subtalar (sub-TAY-lar) fracture, can be very painful. Broken foot bones cause pain, swelling, bruising, and weakness in the foot. It may tingle or feel numb. If the bones are broken badly, they may look misshapen, and it may be impossible to walk.

One of the most common foot breaks occurs in the metatarsals -- the small bones between the toes and the top of the foot. Metatarsals are the equivalent in the foot of the bones in the palm. Stress fractures are common in athletes and are caused by repeated trauma to a bone. They resemble small cracks in the bone but can turn into overt fractures, actually severing and displacing the bone. The navicular bone -- which occupies a position in the foot somewhat like the keystone of an arch and is therefore particularly vulnerable -- can be fractured this way, as can the base of the fifth metatarsal.

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