Miami Marlins fans got a scare when Giancarlo Stanton took a 95-mph fastball to the the back of the head during an intrasquad scrimmage on Wednesday. According to Stanton, the ball struck him just below the helmet where the base of the skull meets the top of the neck.
Thankfully, everything checked out fine. X-rays came back negative and tests showed no concussion-like symptoms. Stanton was back on the practice field Thursday, though he was taking it easy as a precaution. The Marlins’ play their first Grapefruit League game on Saturday. Stanton has stated that he expects to be ready to play on that day, and still plans to play for Team USA in the 2013 World Baseball Classic in March.
No one is more relieved than 20-year-old prospect Jose Fernandez, from whom the pitch got away. Fernandez is Miami’s top prospect – ranked No. 7 overall by MLB.com – and is projected as a future ace of a big league staff.