Kansas City Royals second baseman Omar Infante (14) Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Omar Infante Hit In Jaw By Heath Bell Fastball In Win


 

 

Kansas City Royals second baseman Omar Infante was hit in the jaw by Heath Bell in the 7th inning Monday night against the Tampa Bay Rays. Kansas City went on to win the game, 4-2.

Infante went down hard, rolled on the ground for a moment, then jumped to his feet, with his head down. The Royals training staff quickly ran out to help him, and he was bleeding from the face or mouth. He dropped to his knees with the training staff in attendance. He eventually walked off the field with assistance.

Infante was 1-2 with walk on the night, and is hitting .348 on the season with a terrific .423 On Base Percentage thus far in the season.

Danny Valencia replaced  Infante at second since the Royals have no true back up middle infielder on the roster. He made a good play in his first opportunity in the 8th, then threw wildly on a double play attempt in the 9th. He then fielded the next ball cleanly, and threw on target to Eric Hosmer at first.

The runner he wasn’t able to erase on the double play later scored.

No word on the seriousness of Infante’s injury has yet been announced by the Royals, but it certainly didn’t look good, and it would be surprising if he didn’t have to take some time off, possibly even a DL stint. Yost did say after the game in the post-game press conference that Infante had several stitches put in, and was going for tests for a possible fractured jaw, and a possible concussion.

The Royals designated utility infielder Pedro Ciriaco for assignment over the weekend so they cannot bring him back. The best options will be most likely be either Johnny Giavotella or Christian Colon from AAA Omaha.

The biggest issue is Kansas City really doesn’t have a replacement for Omar Infante in the batting order. Yost loves putting Alcides Escobar batting second, and Escobar is void in the On Base Percentage department (.143 this season, .294 for his career). Giavotella hasn’t been successful at the major league level, and Colon has not played at the top level yet.

Valencia could probably handle the second spot in the order on the short term, but he did not look comfortable at second, especially trying to turn the double play.

Hopefully, Omar Infante’s recovery will be quick.

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Tags: Christian Colon Johnny Giavotella Kansas City Royals Omar Infante

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