Batting practice can be a dangerous place, as Royals first base coach Rusty Kuntz unfortunately learned Monday when a Salvador Perez line drive broke his wrist.
Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star reports that Kuntz was just minding his own business, standing in center field getting ready to hit some fungoes, when Perez lined a ball into his arm. Or as Kuntz described it:
I thought somebody hit me with a baseball bat. It was like “Oh my God. What the hell?” And that was the first time I’ve ever broken a bone.
He’s hoping to be back on the job as soon as this weekend and in the meantime Kuntz mostly seems focused on trying to make Perez feel less bad about what happened after a previous line drive off the Royals catcher’s bat struck Aroldis Chapman in the head.
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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.
Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.
The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.