Cincinnati Reds closer Aroldis Chapman was conscious and talking to medical personnel after being struck in the face by a Salvador Perez line drive during Wednesday night's Cactus League game against the Kansas City Royals.
The early word from the Cincinnati Enquirer's C. Trent Rosecrans was Chapman never lost consciousness on the field and was to have suffered a laceration and a contusion above his left eye. The Reds later reported x-rays taken at Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center revealed fractures above his eye and nose. He'll undergo further testing overnight.
The scary incident happened in the sixth inning as the hard-throwing lefty was attempting to get in some work against Kansas City's major league hitters. Athletic trainers from both teams immediately tended to Chapman as the stunned crowd in Surprise, Arizona watched on in complete silence.
According to Mark L. Sheldon of MLB.com, Chapman's father was among those who ran on the field before Chapman was placed on a stretcher and carted off the field.
The game was not televised on Wednesday, but there is closer video of the swing that led to Chapman's injury.
That's a very uncomfortable crack followed by an immediate and cringe-worthy smack.
After Chapman was taken from the field, Reds manager Bryan Price and general manager Walt Jocketty met with Royals manager Ned Yost and the umpiring crew to decide on the fate of the game. The decision was quickly made to halt play.
An easy and obvious decision given how the players, coaches, umpires and even the writers were feeling in those scary moments following the incident.
As Jay Bruce notes, Chapman is among the hardest throwers in the game. The harder it's thrown, the faster it comes back, which undoubtedly creates a scary scenario every time Chapman or another pitcher like him is on the field. Here's hoping he's able to put it behind him in the weeks and months to come and bounce to back one-hundred percent both physically and mentally.
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