SAN FRANCISCO - Freddy Garcia needs to find the man with the Freddy Garcia voodoo doll and pull the pins out.
Or take him out.
The Phillies righthander opened the season on the disabled list with tendinitis in his right biceps and is 1-2 with a 6.05 ERA in his first four starts. Then yesterday during batting practice at AT&T Park, he ran into a maintenance cart that had stopped unexpectedly on the warning track and suffered a bruised left shin.
There is some doubt as to whether Garcia will make tonight's scheduled start against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field in Phoenix.
"I'll see how I feel tomorrow, but right now I feel better," Garcia said after last night's 8-5 victory over the San Francisco Giants. "Who expects to get hit by a cart during batting practice?"
Who expects to get hit by a cart, period?
"There's no fracture of any kind," Phillies general manager Pat Gillick said. "We've got him iced down. We just think we'll have to wait and see how he feels after the game and how he feels tomorrow. Basically, it could stiffen up overnight and get sore overnight, so we'll have to see how much soreness is there tomorrow."
The injury isn't serious enough to land Garcia on the disabled list. If he can't start tonight, manager Charlie Manuel and pitching coach Rich Dubee will have to get creative.
"I wouldn't say I'm upset, but I'm kind of curious why it was out there while we had the field," Gillick said of the maintenance cart.
"The guy stopped the cart right in front of him," Manuel said. "Damn, use that head for something besides a hat rack."
"We're suing!" closer Brett Myers said jokingly.
The cart had stopped, ironically, because Ryan Howard had lofted a ball to center field and the driver wanted to avoid getting hit.
Garcia, not expecting a cart on the warning track, simply pursued the ball and ran into it. The few thousand fans in the park who watched it happen gasped.
To add insult to injury, Garcia had to be carted to the visitors' dugout by the same cart that caused the injury. He hopped down the dugout steps, avoiding putting pressure on his left leg.
The cart had just left the visitors' bullpen when it happened. The grounds crew typically fixes the Giants' bullpen mound, then the visitors' bullpen mound, driving along the outfield warning track to get there.
"It's standard operating procedure," said Jorge Costa, senior vice president of ballpark operations. "We've done it for eight seasons and never had a problem. Obviously, it's an unfortunate accident and we're sorry it happened."
Costa said that the Giants would look into changing that procedure.
"It's never been an issue until now," Costa said.
Howard's health. Ryan Howard, who hit a two-run homer in the third inning last night, said his sore left quadriceps, which has been bothering him since spring training, has affected his swing. But Manuel said it's not serious enough to think about a stint on the disabled list.