CLEVELAND: Indians manager Terry Francona said Wednesday that testing left fielder Michael Brantley underwent at the Cleveland Clinic on Tuesday revealed he suffered “a mild concussion” during Monday’s game.
Brantley took a knee to the head while sliding into second base in an attempt to break up a double play.
Originally penciled into Tuesday’s lineup against the visiting Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Brantley was later scratched “for precautionary reasons” when he started experiencing symptoms when he “ramped up” baseball activities.
“I just didn’t feel perfect,” Brantley said. “It’s a day-by-day process and I’m looking forward to getting back with the team as soon as possible. [But I need to] listen to what the medical staff says and make sure I’m able to go 100 percent.”
On Wednesday, Brantley began feeling much better — and was able to partake in some early baseball activities without any issues.
“I’m getting better every day,” he said. “I was able to play catch [Wednesday] and hit off a tee. I got a good workout in, and it’s all been positive feedback.”
Because the Indians’ medical staff deemed Brantley’s concussion to be milder than the doozy suffered by catcher Carlos Santana in Baltimore (after a foul ball banged off his catching mask and left him sensitive to light), the experts felt no need to place Brantley on Major League Baseball’s seven-day concussion list as they needed to do with Santana.
“[Brantley] is more clear eyed and looks like he is doing very well,” Francona said. “As long as he is OK once he gets out on the field, things can progress rapidly. He’s not having problems with light or anything.”
Francona said that as long as Brantley’s condition continues to progress, he expected him to be back in uniform in time for Friday’s opening of a three-game series with division rival Detroit. But Francona also noted that he wouldn’t rule out the possibility of Brantley returning to the lineup as early as today for a 12:05 p.m. game that wraps up a four-game set against the Angels.
That’s good news for the team’s fans; Brantley is one of the Indians’ top candidates to be named to the upcoming All-Star Game. Through 69 games, he’s batting .323 with 17 doubles, a triple, a career-high 11 home runs, owns a .909 OPS and has scored 49 runs. He also owns nearly as many walks (24) to strikeouts (28) and has nine stolen bases in as many attempts.
Stephanie Storm can be reached at email@example.com. Read the Indians blog at www.ohio.com/indians. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/SStormABJ and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/abj.sports.