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Braves minor league manager hit by foul ball in dugout, airlifted to the hospital

Mar 9, 2011, 1:34 PM EDT

A scary scene in Orlando as the Braves play the Cardinals this afternoon:  a foul ball came screaming off the bat of Brian McCann and into the Braves dugout.  It struck Braves minor league manager Luis Salazar, who was face down on the ground for several minutes after it hit him. An ambulance crew took him away in a stretcher, and he was then airlifted to an Orlando hospital.

UPDATE:  Mark Bowman from reports:

Salazar was hit as he stood along the rail of the dugout in the first inning of Wednesday’s game against the Cardinals. He appeared to be stiff-legged as he fell back and seemingly struck his head against the hard dugout floor.

This is sounding worse and worse.

UPDATE II:  Dave O’Brien reports that Salazar was unconscious for as long as 20 minutes, but when he regained consciousness he was breathing on his own.  Real life isn’t like the movies. Being knocked unconscious for even a few minutes is scary stuff.  Twenty minutes is an eternity. Still, guardedly good news so far.

UPDATE III:  Salazar has multiple facial fractures and an eye surgeon is currently examining him. He was hit in the left side of the face by the ball, and then fell and hit the floor of the dugout face-first.

  1. BC - Mar 9, 2011 at 1:57 PM

    Eeek. That sounds scary. Surprised it doesn’t happen more.
    I remember in the 80’s when John Tudor (I think it was) was pretty severly injured in a similar event – not a head injury though.

  2. yankeesgameday - Mar 9, 2011 at 2:02 PM

    This is just awful. I was once pitching BP without a screen and took a line drive off of my thigh. The section of my leg where the ball hit must have died or something because it didn’t turn black and blue, or even purple… it turned black for over a month.

    This guy got hit in the head. it has to be terrifying for him and his family. Wishing him all the best for a speedy recovery.

    • cur68 - Mar 9, 2011 at 2:05 PM

      I took a golf ball in the thigh once. Same thing. Bone bruise or fracture I think. Hope Salazar is going to be ok. I’m surprised but grateful it doesn’t happen more often.

  3. sayheykidwschamp - Mar 9, 2011 at 2:10 PM

    Same thing happened to Eugenio Velez on the Giants last year. He was hit on the side of the head close to the temple which is the softest part of the skull. Hope the manager is OK. Really scary stuff! That could be a career ender or worse. So MLB should consider protecting the dugouts more…maybe with a higher front railing by a couple feet that has the netting on it already. Not sure what you can do about the area by the stairs away from the netting.

  4. BC - Mar 9, 2011 at 4:04 PM

    Some updated information:
    Sounds like he got blasted in the face pretty good. But he’s conscious. Can’t imagine what his face must look like.

    • cur68 - Mar 9, 2011 at 4:12 PM

      Oh boy. That sounds pretty bad when they describe what happened after the foul ball hit him. Breathing & awake are 2 things that rarely = bad news when its about head injury, so lets stay optimistic here.

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