During batting practice prior to Game 1 of the NLCS, San Francisco Giants first base coach, Roberto Kelly, took a line drive to the head and was consequently taken to the hospital where he was told he sustained a concussion.
As a result, Kelly was not handling the first-base coaching duties in Game 1, and as the Los Angeles Times' Houston Mitchell reports, he will miss at least Game 2 as well. Mitchell passed along this quote from Giants skipper Bruce Bochy:
I don't see him being out there at least these two games [Games 1 and 2], if not longer. He's at home, he's resting well [but] he didn't sleep much last night. He hasn't come in yet. Dave Groeschner, our trainer, and I were hoping he could come in so they could check him out again.
It is certainly understandable why the former 14-year major league veteran Kelly would miss some work. He was standing near second base when a line drive off the bat of the powerful Buster Posey slammed into the back of his head.
Kelly likely thought he was being protected from the screen used by the pitcher, but this shot just happened to slide in a narrow window which put Kelly in harm's way.
After being able to get back on his feet, Kelly needed assistance getting off the field. It was a scary moment, and the fact that only sustained a concussion is good news. Not to belittle concussions, but this was a nasty shot that could have been worse.
As for the Giants dealing with Kelly's absence in a playoff series, they shouldn't miss a beat. Joe Lefebvre replaced Kelly for Game 1, and as Mitchell reported, Bochy has confidence in his assistance.
The 56-year-old spent six seasons in the majors and his coaching career began in 1987. I think it is safe to say that Lefebvre has the experience that will equip him with the ability to handle these duties, but hopefully he won't have to for long due to Kelly making a speedy and full recovery.
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