DENVER — The Rockies’ linebacker Ryan Feltner stayed in an area hospital Sunday with a fractured skull and concussion after being hit in the side of the head by a line to a drive Saturday in a game against the Phillies at Corus Field. Here’s what you need to know:
- Feltner, 26, was hit in the right side of the head by a 93-mph hit from Philadelphia’s Nick Castellanos in the second half of Saturday’s loss. He fell on the mound and lay still until the coaches rushed to his side: “I just said, stay there, stay down,” said Colorado catcher Elias Diaz. “It was a crazy thing.”
- After Feltner walked off the field with the help of coaches, he was immediately taken to a local hospital for tests and was held overnight and into Sunday for observation.
- Rockies manager Bud Black said he will miss at least several weeks, if not months, while he recovers from a broken bone.
What’s next for Feltner?
Feltner was poised to make his first full season with the Rockies after being called up from Double A in late 2021, then split his time between the Rockies and Triple A last season.
Instead, he would need a large amount of time to heal. Black said Feltner would not require surgery, but between suffering a concussion and a skull fracture, he would not be active on the field for at least several weeks.
“As soon as I touched (the base) first, I turned around and was really hoping it didn’t happen,” Castellanos said. “There was a part of me that wanted to go to the mound, but I think the baseball player takes charge and you go to the start.”
Black said the Rockies hope to see Feltner at their club on Monday.
“He needs to let nature take its course on this,” Black said.
Feltner started the season at the back end of the Colorado rotation but became, essentially, the club’s No. 3 pitcher, after injuries depleted his staff. Over 35 1/3 innings pitched this season, he’s had a 5.86 ERA.
What will Rocky do now?
In the past two weeks, the Rockies have lost their Opening Day starter Germán Marquez for the season after Tommy John and Antonio Cinzatella surgery for at least two months due to a sprained elbow. They had previously cut José Urena on the right hand. Kyle Vreeland and Austin Gomper are the only remaining pitchers to start the season in their rotation.
On Monday, when the Rockies found out Senzatela wouldn’t return until later this summer, the club signed Chase Anderson to waivers from the Rays. They also moved Conor Siebold from the bullpen to the rotation.
On Sunday, the Rockies called up Riley Bent, the No. 4 pick in the 2016 MLB draft. Bent, 25, was a consensus top 50 prospect with a 101-mph fastball. However injuries and control issues slowed his progress and in 2021, Bent retired from playing. He returned later in the year with a new opportunity as a reliever.
Bent will join Colorado to join another converted player, Peter Lambert, who pitched in relief from Feltner on Saturday.
The Rockies will likely be looking for another arm to replace Feltner in the rotation, perhaps Ty Blach, who started with Triple-A Albuquerque on Saturday. Blach, who started the season in the bullpen in Colorado, was set for assignment earlier this month.
With Thursday out today, the Rockies won’t need a fifth start until May 23, when they take on the Marlins at Coors Field.
(Photo: Dustin Bradford/Getty)