Jason Heyward leaves game after being hit in the side of the head with a pitch

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Braves outfielder Jason Heyward has left today’s Braves-Mets game in the top of the sixth after being hit in the head with a Jon Niese fastball.  Heyward stayed on the ground for a good while after being hit and then left the game. He appeared groggy, but there were no apparent external injuries, lacerations or the like.  Obviously a concussion is a major concern.

There was no purpose behind Jon Neise’s pitch. Neither the game situation nor any past history suggests an intent. It appeared to be a fastball that simply got away from him. Niese himself appeared to be off his game for the next couple of batters, allowing a couple of hits including an RBI.  He then bore down and struck out Chris Johnson.

We’ll have an updates on Heyward’s status when we get one.

The Red Sox to designate Hanley Ramirez for assignment

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The Boston Red Sox plan to activate Dustin Pedroia from the disabled list today. That’s a big deal. The move they’re making to make room for him on the roster is a big one too: they plan to designate Hanley Ramirez for assignment.

The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier first reported the impending transaction. He was told by a major league source that Ramirez was informed this morning he’ll be moved off the roster. A designation for assignment, of course, means that the Sox have seven days to either trade or release Ramirez.

Ramirez, 34, is experiencing his worst season as a major leaguer thus far, hitting .254/.313/.395 (88 OPS+) in 195 plate appearances as he split time between first base and designated hitter. Given how well Mitch Moreland has hit at first and J.D. Martinez has hit at DH, there is simply no room for Ramirez in the lineup.

Ramirez, a 14-year big league veteran, won the 2006 Rookie of the Year Award and won the NL batting title in 2009. He has been a below average hitter in three of his last four seasons, however, and long removed from his days as a middle infielder, he has little defensive value these days. That said, his fame and the possibility that he could put together a decent run if used wisely will likely get him some looks from other clubs.