Rays' Cobb expected to be released from hospital

Associated Press
Tampa Bay Rays catcher Jose Lobaton, left, and left fielder Kelly Johnson, center, rush in to assist starting pitcher Alex Cobb as Cobb grabs his head and lies on the pitcher's mound after being hit by a line drive by Kansas City Royals' Eric Hosmer during the fifth inning of a baseball game Saturday, June 15, 2013, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Cobb was taken off the field on a stretcher. (AP Photo/Brian Blanco)
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Alex Cobb was expected to leave the hospital Sunday, one day after he was hit in the right ear by a line drive.

The Rays announced before their game against Kansas City that Cobb would likely get out in the afternoon. The team said he will be placed on the seven-day concussion list.

Cobb texted teammates Sunday morning, including pitcher Matt Moore, saying he has a headache but would be leaving the hospital later in the day.

Cobb was struck by a liner off the bat of Kansas City's Eric Hosmer in the fifth inning of Saturday's game but remained conscious the whole time. He was taken off the field on a stretcher and transported to Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg.

Moore was among a group of around 15 players, which included Hosmer and former Cobb teammates and current Royals James Shields and Elliot Johnson, who went to the hospital after Saturday's game.

"I think he was very happy to see how many people wanted to come and see him," Moore said.

It was a tough week for Cobb, who left the team after starting Monday night's game against Boston due to the death of his grandmother. He was informed of the death after the game in which the 25-year old gave up a season-high six runs over four innings in a 10-8, 14-inning loss to the Red Sox.

This latest incident of a pitcher being hit by a batted ball is sure to spark more discussions about new pitching protection equipment.

"Whoever comes up with the solution for this, they're never going to have to work again in their lives," Rays pitcher David Price said. "It's scary. We know about that. You think about it, and then you don't think about it when you're on the mound. But when you see it happen, and you see line drives and hard groundballs up the middle, it definitely cross your mind."

Moore said he would be willing to wear headgear if it was developed.

"A cricket helmet, or whatever it was, I would give it my best effort to make sure I pitch with that," Moore said. "If I could prevent something like that by wearing something, without a doubt I would."

While pitching for Oakland last Sept. 5, Brandon McCarthy sustained what were described at the time as life-threatening injuries when he was struck in the head by a line drive off the bat of Erick Aybar of the Angels. The pitcher had an epidural hemorrhage, brain contusion and a skull fracture. Emergency surgery was performed that night and he was released from the hospital six days later.

McCarthy, now with Arizona, is taking medication and says he's confident he'll be fine after he recently collapsed at a restaurant with a seizure related to the head injury he sustained while pitching last September.

The Diamondbacks' right-hander underwent extensive examinations at the Mayo Clinic after the episode Monday. He was having dinner with his wife at a Phoenix restaurant when he passed out.

"You never want to see anybody go through that," Shields said. "You just never know what's going to come out of it. You look at McCarthy, he walked off the field. Next thing you know, they're doing surgery on him."

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