The Yankees' experiment with Jose Pirela in center field didn't go too well this afternoon. On his first chance of the day, the 25-year-old utility player crashed into the outfield wall trying to chase down as a Juan Lagares fly ball. He didn't get up after hitting the ground and had to be removed from the field by cart:
While everyone seems to be emphasizing the part where he slams into the wall, it would seem that Pirela also might have hit the back of his head on the ground as he fell. That whiplash might have done the damage. He left the field in an ambulance and was later diagnosed with a concussion at the hospital. There's no indication of how serious it is, but as we all know, concussions can be tricky and can take a long time to go away. He could end up missing a week and be fine or he could still be feeling side effects months into the season. According to Jose Norris, this isn't his first concussion.
The injury comes at a really bad time for him as Brendan Ryan's back injury might have given him an opening to make the team out of spring training. He has hit .370/.433/.630 over 30 plate appearances this spring and his ability to play second, third, and some outfield could have given him a huge leg up over the offensively inept Ryan. Now, as long as Ryan proves to be healthy, it seems like everything is all set on the position player side of spring training.Update:
Good news to hear.
Good news on Pirela. Yankees say MRI and CT scan came back normal. He was discharged from hospital. Avoided serious injury.— Sweeny Murti (@YankeesWFAN) March 22, 2015