Mike Napoli's playing career could be over as he'll have season-ending surgery for a torn right ACL the veteran first baseman suffered during a Triple-A game Tuesday night, the Cleveland Indians announced on Thursday.
Napoli was carted off the field after injuring his ACL and meniscus attempting to field a popup in foul territory.
Indians manager Terry Francona says he's been texting with Napoli since the injury and hinted at a future after his playing career.
"I told him, 'Things happen for a reason,'" Francona said, per MLB.com. "Who knows? Maybe this now starts him on a second journey in his career. I'm not speaking for him -- that's not fair. But that's what I hope."
"He was an impact player," Francona said. "My guess is he'll impact the game doing something else now."
Napoli, 36, is playing on a minor league contract signed with the Indians in February. He had one hit (a grand slam) in 24 at-bats for Triple-A Columbus after not making the major league roster out of spring training.
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Napoli spent last year with the Texas Rangers, hitting .193 with 29 home runs and 66 RBIs. He had a career year as a member of the Indians' 2016 American League pennant-winner, hitting .239 with 34 home runs and 101 RBIs.
In 12 major league seasons, Napoli has hit .246 with 267 home runs and 744 RBIs.