Juan Nicasio, the Colorado Rockies' 24-year-old rookie pitcher, was hospitalized Friday night after taking a sharp line drive to side of his head during just the 13th start of his career against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field in Denver.
Leading off the top of the second inning, Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond lined the second pitch that he saw right back toward the mound. The right-handed pitcher had enough time to turn his head to the side but could not evade the screaming drive. He dropped instantly as the ball ricocheted far from the mound. Players on both teams and fans in the stadium looked on fearfully as medical personnel attended to the fallen pitcher.
The Denver Post reported that after being hit in the head by that liner, Nicasio was diagnosed with a broken neck and required surgery.