MIAMI -- Adam Greenberg has faced one pitch in the major leagues, a 92-mph fastball that struck him in the head and changed his life. More than seven years later, the Miami Marlins are giving him a second chance.
The Marlins said yesterday that they have signed Greenberg to a one-day contract, effective Oct. 2, and will play him that day against the Mets. Greenberg made his big-league debut for the Cubs on July 9, 2005, against the Marlins, getting one plate appearance but no official at-bat.
He is one of only two men to be hit by a pitch in his first and only major-league appearance and never again take the field. Fred van Dusen, with Philadelphia in 1955, is the other.
"Life's going to throw you curveballs -- or fastballs in the back of your head," Greenberg said on a conference call yesterday morning. "I got hit by one of them. And it knocked me down and I could have stayed there. I had a choice . . . and I chose to get up and get back in the box."
The Marlins publicly extended the invitation to Greenberg on NBC's "Today" show yesterday morning. Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said Greenberg could start. "I might start him in leftfield and have him lead off," he said. "If he hits a home run, he stays!"
Said Mets manager Terry Collins: "I know our guys will be on the top step clapping for him when he gets in the batter's box."