It was a routine move, on a routine play, during a routine practice.
It was just about a year ago that Bellarmine-Jefferson High junior baseball player Philip Diaz-McTague was taking part in a fielding drill at shortstop at Burbank's Brace Canyon Park. As the athlete stepped to field the ball, he felt his left ankle snap.
Diaz-McTague said the pain was almost unbearable, as he dropped to the infield ground in a heap. He had to be carried off the field by a Guards assistant coach.
"It was a backhand play, a play I've done many times," said Diaz-McTague of the incident that took place last March. "My ankle was already injured…and then out of nowhere my ankle kind of buckled on me and I heard it pop. I knew it was bad."
After seeking medical help, Diaz-McTague said he was told that the bone in his ankle had completely separated. He was also informed that his injured leg would require a complicated surgery. Not only did the injury put an end to his season, but doctors told him he might not ever be able to resume rigorous physical activity.