CHICAGO (AP) -Houston Astros third baseman Ty Wigginton has a small fracture in his left thumb and was out of the lineup for Sunday's game against the Chicago Cubs.
Wigginton was optimistic the injury won't send him to the disabled list. Wigginton hurt his hand in the seventh inning of Saturday's 9-7 loss to Chicago when Cubs pitcher Jason Marquis spiked Wigginton's glove while sliding into third. Tests revealed the fracture.
``It's pretty sore this morning,'' Wigginton said Sunday. ``It almost felt like when somebody jams your finger with a basketball.''
Wigginton was scheduled to see a hand specialist on Monday to determine the extent of the injury. He said he's a quick healer and expects to return in a few days.
``I broke my hand and I was told I'd be out six or seven weeks,'' Wigginton said of an injury in July 2006. ``I was playing within three-and-a-half. So far I've been able to heal pretty quickly from anything that I've had.''
Manager Cecil Cooper remained hopeful that Wigginton would avoid the DL. Geoff Blum started Sunday's game at third in Wigginton's place.
Astros first baseman Lance Berkman was out of the lineup Sunday with a sore neck. He left Saturday's game in the third inning with neck spasms.
Berkman said his neck felt better on Sunday and hoped to be in the lineup Monday for Houston's home opener against the Cardinals.
``I've got a lot more flexibility,'' Berkman said. ``I can turn my neck a little farther than I could yesterday.''
Darin Erstad started Sunday in place of Berkman.

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