During the fifth inning of Saturday’s game, Alex Cobb, Tampa Bay Rays pitcher, left the field on a stretcher after being hit on the right ear by a liner off the bat of Kansas City’s Eric Hosmer.
At impact, Cobb fell to the ground grabbing his head. Medical staff and trainers from both teams immediately ran to assist him.
“I honestly didn’t even want to run to first,” Hosmer said. “I just wanted to see how he was doing. It’s freaky, scary stuff, man. There’s a lot of stuff racing through my mind and I just kind of shut down after that happened.”
Elliot Johnson a former Rays player, said Cobb is one of the best pitchers he has ever seen fielding comebackers, which spoke to the violence of the shot.
“Honestly, he’s probably the best pitcher when it comes to comebackers,” Johnson said. “You know the ball is just scorched. For him to take a ball off the head like that, it’s as scary as it gets.”
Rays players, manager Joe Maddon and pitching coach Jim Hickey congregated around the mound, Hickey anxiously pacing the ground.
It was evident that Cobb was still conscious by the movement of his legs while medical staff examined him. Cobb was taken to Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg Florida for more tests. Cobb’s tests came back normal. He suffered a mild concussion and all neurological tests were normal. Maddon said that seemed unthinkable considering the sight and sound of the spectacle.
“It’s awesome he appears to be fine,” Maddon said. “The moment it happens, it appears awful.”
Cobb was struck behind the ear by a line drive. David Price, who left the game to visit him in the hospital, said when he arrived Cobb was awake, alert and joking with the nurses at Bayfront Medical Center.
“He was laughing. He seemed pretty normal,” Price said. “Trainer, Ron Porterfield, was making him mad because he wouldn’t let him stand up.”
When the ball hit the side of Cobb’s head, it made the same sound of a bat hitting a ball. Everyone in the stadium was silent, some players grabbed their hands as they watched.
During the game on Monday night against Boston, Cobb had to leave after finding out his grandmother passed. The week as been a challenging week for Cobb, forgoing a season-high six runs over four innings in a 10-8, 14-inning loss to the Red Sox.
Last month, a similar situation happened with the Bluejays’ pitcher J.A. Happ who was struck by a liner when they played against the Rays, he suffered a skull fracture.
Happ has been fine since his accident, but Arizona’s McCarthy who endured a similar injury in September, while pitching for Oakland, sustained life threatening injuries when he was struck by a liner, while playing against the Los Angeles Angels. He had an epidural hemorrhage, brain contusion and a skull fracture.
Recently, McCarthy passed out while having dinner with his wife and it was said to be the result of a seizure related to his injuries.
As Cobb ended the night in the Hospital, his team went on to win the game 5-3 over the Kansas City Royals.
By: Veverly Edwards