File under “freak injuries to pitchers who are either batting or preparing to do so”:
He was in the indoor batting cages and fouled one back into his face.
There is apparently a lot of swelling at the moment. The O’s are waiting to see if it subsides or of it increases or moves up towards his eyes, thus impairing his sight. The team doesn’t yet know if anything is broken.
UPDATE, 7:42 PM: X-rays have ruled out a broken nose, according to MASN’s Roch Kubatko. Matusz has been diagnosed with a nose contusion and should be fine to take the mound for his Wednesday start.
The Angels signed Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani for a $2.3 million signing bonus last weekend. They may have damaged goods on their hands. Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that Ohtani underwent a physical that revealed a first-degree sprain of his ulnar collateral ligament. As a result, he got a platelet-rich plasma injection on October 20. This was made known to teams after Ohtani entered MLB’s posting system, so it wasn’t like the Angels went into this blind.
Ohtani’s report said, “Although partial damage of UCL in deep layer of his right UCL exists, he is able to continue full baseball participation with sufficient elbow care program.” It also said Ohtani “will most likely be available to start his throwing program approximately a month from the PRP.”
Passan notes that the report also mentioned that a “small free body” floats in Ohtani’s elbow near his UCL.
Ohtani isn’t without other injuries. He battled hamstring and ankle issues throughout 2017 and underwent right ankle surgery back in October. Thankfully for the Angels, this diagnosis is about as good as it could be considering the circumstances. However, if Ohtani does exacerbate his UCL issue, he may ultimately need Tommy John surgery at some point, which would take him out of action for at least a year.