Friday, October 7, 2022

Braves’ Jackson Stephens placed on concussion injured list after being struck by line drive vs. Cardinals

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USATSI

The Atlanta Braves placed right-handed pitcher Jackson Stephens on the concussion injured list on Saturday, less than a day after he was hit in the head with a line drive. In a corresponding move, the Braves recalled fellow reliever Jay Jackson from Triple-A. The Braves announced both of those moves on their official Twitter account.

It’s unclear how much time Stephens will miss. Players who are placed on the concussion list are ruled out for at least a week, however.

Stephens, 28 years old, was tasked with pitching the bottom of the ninth inning of Friday night’s Braves blowout 11-4 victory against the St. Louis Cardinals. Unfortunately, the sixth batter of Stephen’s outing — infielder Brendan Donovan — hit a line drive that struck him in the forehead area, resulting in a “mild” concussion. You can view the play below, but be warned that it may not be suitable for everyone as it shows the moment of contact as well as the aftermath.

Stephens, who entered the season with 36 career big-league appearances, and none since the start of the 2019 season, has been a surprisingly effective member of Atlanta’s bullpen this year. Including Friday night’s appearances, he’s thrown in 32 games and has amassed a 3.89 ERA (108 ERA+) and a 2.26 strikeout-to-walk ratio. 

Jackson, for his part, is a well-traveled 34-year-old who has appeared in 17 games this season with Braves’ minor-league affiliates. The Braves acquired him in a small trade last November from the San Francisco Giants, and he’s been on the receiving end of a few promotions this season, though he’s yet to get into a big-league contest. Jackson pitched in 23 games last season with the Giants, accumulating a 3.74 ERA (111 ERA+) and a 2.33 strikeout-to-walk ratio. 

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