Long putter = long layoff for Levin

Spencer Levin
Getty Images
Spencer Levin's belly putter has been beneficial to his career -- until now.
PGA.com

Series: Golf Buzz

File this item under freak golf injuries. PGA Tour player Spencer Levin is out for the remainder of the year after tearing a ligament in his left thumb – simply by mishandling his belly putter.

While practicing three weeks ago, Levin tweaked his thumb while holding his belly putter, according to The Sacramento Bee. He tried resting a couple weeks, but his thumb wasn’t improving.

"We got three opinions," Don Levin, Spencer's father, told the newspaper. "One guy said more rest, two guys said surgery."

So into the operating room Levin went on Tuesday in Los Angeles.

He’s scheduled to be out for four weeks, which includes the remainder of the PGA Tour’s Fall Series. That’s a bummer for Levin, who counts last week’s Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals Open and this week’s Frys.com Open among his favorite events of the year.

He's expected to be able to start hitting balls again the first week of December, according to The Bee, and he should be able to start fresh when the 2013 season rolls around. Most important, Levin already has comfortably locked up his 2013 PGA Tour privileges – he’s currently 62nd on the money list with no chance of being knocked out of the top 125, regardless of what happens the rest of the way.

PGA.com