Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia left Saturday’s game in the second inning with a head injury. He suffered the injury attempting to apply a tag to Logan Forsythe, who was advancing from first base to second base on Ryan Hanigan’s deep fly ball to center field, which allowed James Loney to score.
Forsythe slid head-first and lifted up his right arm to avoid Pedroia’s glove. In rotating his arm around, he appeared to elbow Pedroia in the temple on the left side of his head — it did not appear to be intentional. Pedroia was down for a while before leaving the field with the help of manager John Farrell and a team trainer. Brock Holt moved from third base to second base, and Will Middlebrooks entered the game to man the hot corner. Pedroia grounded out to shortstop in his only at-bat on the evening.
The severity of the injury is not yet known as the Red Sox have not provided updates at the moment.
Here’s video of the play.
On Monday, Baseball America reported that MLB is prepared to expand to Portland and Montreal. We talked about that at length yesterday. One of the most common responses to that piece has been “Portland? Really?”
There’s good reason for that response. Baseball-to-Portland has been talked about for years, but there has never been any real traction. Past initiatives have failed, significant public funding for a stadium seems to be a political impossibility and, heck, Portland wasn’t even interested in keeping its Triple-A team, turning its stadium into a much more successful soccer venue and not missing the Beavers all that much.
It would seem, however, that the reports are not mere speculation and there is a genuine baseball-to-Portland initiative afoot once again. From the Oregonian:
On Tuesday, former Trail Blazers broadcaster Mike Barrett confirmed to The Oregonian/OregonLive that he is part of the Portland group.
“I am officially involved with a campaign to bring Major League Baseball and a stadium development to Portland,” Barrett said. “There is also a formally organized, sophisticated and seasoned management group running this initiative. We will keep you fully apprised of any/all developments as this project progresses.”
One guy — a broadcaster no less — saying he’s part of a group is not exactly a major needle-mover, of course. But it does contrast with past Portland initiatives that have been well-publicized grassroots affairs. While those may have been more broad-based and while their public nature may have provided some refreshing transparency, the simple fact of professional sports ownership in the 21st century is that well-monied groups who play things close to the vest are more likely to make waves. We’re in an age when technocratic hedge fund-type guys make things happen in this arena, not in an age when flamboyant public personalities do.
None of which is to say that baseball in Portland is a lock or that expansion anywhere is a short term proposition. It’s just to note that, yeah, there is a bit more going on, it seems, than just pointing at a map and saying “yeah, a team would make sense here.”