A line drive from Robert Andino in batting practice struck Tigers reliever Al Alburquerque in the head, creating a frightening scene here at Camden Yards.
Alburquerque went down hard and was kicking his legs while players from both teams and members of the Tigers training staff gathered around him. Alburquerque left the field on a cart and was taken to a nearby hospital for a CT scan.
A photographer in the press box identified Alburquerque as the stricken player.
I’ll pass along any updates as they become available.
Mark Reynolds is 0-for-17 with nine strikeouts since homering into the second deck in left field during Sunday’s game.
Vladimir Guerrero, lowered to fifth in the lineup, has one hit in his last 28 at-bats. He had batted cleanup in every game that he started this season.
The Orioles made reliever Willie Eyre an offer over the winter before he signed a minor league deal with the Athletics.
Eyre, 33, was 5-5 with a 3.31 ERA in 42 games with Triple-A Sacramento and Norfolk.
“He’s pitched in the big leagues, he’s pitching well down there,” manager Buck Showalter said. “He had an out (clause) in Triple-A, and obviously that’s a pretty tough staff to crack there in Oakland. You know the PCL and the challenge it is for pitchers. A good makeup guy. Everybody who’s ever had Willie obviously liked having him around. Hopefully, he can take some of the load and help us down in the bullpen, especially from the right side later in the game. We’ll see.
“We tried to let him get some outings there and make sure we had an idea what we might be getting. We wanted to give him day yesterday so he’d be available to us tonight. I can’t sit here and tell you I know him real well. I talked to Gary (Allenson) and Griff (Mike Griffin) down in Triple-A. What we had available at the time and what our needs were, he was the best available.”
Showalter was asked whether he read anything ominous in Brian Roberts canceling his annual “Brian’s Baseball Bash.”
“Knowing Brian and how important that is to him, he’s probably in the process of making it up in some other form or fashion,” Showalter said. “We had a lot of the items he was going to use here in storage. I look forward to him getting cleared by the doctor and start playing games. I hope it happens.”
Is it important for Roberts to play this season?
“If he can do it physically,” Showalter replied. “I don’t think anybody here, including me, considers himself an expert on concussions and I think as the sports world has gone wrong, especially in football, I think everybody’s being educated more. Is it important? It’s important for him to be healthy from a life standpoint and make sure he gets that point of it. Whether it allows him to play baseball this year for me right now is secondary. I think we all know what it would mean for us as a team, but we’ve been kind of shuffling around with the leadoff spot since the time he left, as evidenced by today. I just hope the best for him.
“I’d love to see him back here. I think everybody knows what he means to the club if he could do that. I haven’t put it out of mind, but because it’s been a long period of time, some of the challenges Robby’s had with some other things, you’ve got to go forward without it. We talked about it in the off-season a lot, the what-ifs, and you do that with every position. But with some of the challenges Robby’s had, it’s been more of the case because he’s so important to our club when he’s on the field. I’d love to think that he’s going to be able to come back and play this year, but I haven’t at any time thought it was a given.”