Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton had his season come to an end in horrific fashion last September when he suffered facial fractures and dental damage on a hit-by-pitch, so of course he got hit in the hip by a pitch from teammate Henderson Alvarez during an intrasquad game today.
Here’s a look at the scene below, via Juan C. Rodriguez of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel:
Yes, Stanton is fine. It was going to happen sooner or later, so perhaps it’s better that he got it out of the way now. Prospect catcher J.T. Realmuto might have put it best when he later told Rodriguez that “the baseball might have been hurt more than him.” This minor scare is noteworthy given how Stanton’s season ended, but he said he’s 100 percent past it.
“Feels good,” Stanton said, afterward. “No thoughts, 100 percent fine. Didn’t have one thought about it.”
Stanton faced live pitching Thursday for the first time since the injury and tested out his new special helmet for the first time today.
Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.
In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.
The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.
The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.