Dave O’Brien talked to Chipper Jones, who was standing on first base when Braves’ minor league manager Luis Salazar was hit by that foul ball earlier today. We already know that Salazar’s injuries are serious, but it was feared to be even worse as it happened:
I just … I wish I wouldn’t have looked. But I did. It was just hard to put into words. You don’t see it every day. I’ve seen it one other time in my career, where a guy took a 90-mph pitch square in the nose, Danny Bautista in Atlanta in, like, 1996. I thought that was the worst on-field injury that I’d ever seen, until today … I’m so glad to hear that he’s conscious and breathing on his own. But, yeah, there were some times where there were some worried looks on the some paramedics’ faces.
As reported earlier, Salazar has multiple facial fractures. Given that he was unconscious for 20 minutes, he likely suffered a concussion at the very least. An eye surgeon has been called in.
This is probably the worst incident of its kind involving on-field personnel since the Mike Coolbaugh tragedy.
The Giants are finalizing a minor league deal for free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin, according to Andrew Baggarly and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The team has not confirmed the signing, but it’s in keeping with their stated goal of adding more veteran presence and outfield options to their roster in advance of the 2019 season.
Maybin, 31, appeared in back-to-back gigs with the Marlins and Mariners in 2018. He slashed an underwhelming .249/.326/.336 with four home runs, 10 stolen bases (in 15 chances), a .662 OPS, and 0.5 fWAR through 384 plate appearances for the two clubs, a clear improvement over his totals in 2017 but still shy of the career numbers he posted with the Padres all the way back in 2011. It’s not only his offense that has tanked, but his speed and defense in center field, all of which he’ll try to improve as he jockeys for a roster spot in camp this month.
The Giants’ outfield has been largely depleted of any kind of consistent talent lately, especially taking into account the recent departures of Hunter Pence, Gregor Blanco, and Gorkys Hernández. Even with the acquisition of, say, All-Star right fielder Bryce Harper, there’s nothing standing in the way of Maybin and fellow veteran signee Gerardo Parra grabbing hold of full- or part-time roles this year, though they’ll need to outperform candidates like Chris Shaw, Steven Duggar, Drew Ferguson, Mac Williamson, Austin Slater, Craig Gentry, Mike Gerber, and others first.
In a previous report on Friday, Baggarly revealed that a “handshake understanding” had been established with several veteran players already this offseason, all but guaranteeing them regular starting opportunities over the course of the season. How those agreements will be affected by spring training performances remains to be seen, but at least for now, the Giants appear prepared to give their newest players a long leash as they try to get back on top in the NL West.