Mets' Ruben Tejada seems OK after getting hit in helmet with fastball
SEATTLE - A few hours after he picked himself up off the ground, Mets shortstop Ruben Tejada extended his right arm and gestured with his hand.
"I only saw the ball right here," said Tejada, who left Wednesday's 3-2 win over the Mariners in the fifth inning, when he was struck in the helmet with a fastball.
Taijuan Walker's 94-mph heater left the imprint of a baseball on Tejada's helmet, just to the left of the orange Mets logo. The speed of the pitch didn't leave Tejada enough time to turn around. All he could do was brace for impact.
Yet, Tejada said he felt no lingering effects and initial tests revealed no signs of a concussion. For now, manager Terry Collins said the Mets intend to make no roster move to replace Tejada, who will be re-examined before Thursday night's series opener in Milwaukee.
"He feels pretty good," Collins said. "We've got to get on a plane, which the doctors say he should be OK, but we'll take a look at him tomorrow. I may give him just another day to make sure he's OK."
However, Collins wouldn't say Tejada was out of the woods. "Everything right now looks OK," Collins said. "He has no symptoms. But sometimes, these things pop up a little later, some dizziness or something."
Without a true backup shortstop, Eric Campbell finished the game and likely would start if Tejada is sidelined.
The crash of the ball hitting the helmet sent a boom through Safeco Field. For a few moments, Tejada remained facedown on the ground, mostly to compose himself. He eventually walked off the field.
Walker appeared rattled, too, walking three of the next five batters before he was pulled.
"It scared me, too," Tejada said. "High fastball, like 93-94 mph, and it scared me. I saw the ball and tried to protect. That's the only thing I could do at that moment."