Casilla OK after batting-practice mishap

Closer hit in leg by McGehee's line drive; Romo improving

Casilla OK after batting-practice mishap

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Santiago Casilla and the Giants survived a scare Thursday morning when the reliever escaped with a bruise after a batted ball struck him on his left shin.

Casilla, the Giants' closer, was pitching live batting practice to Casey McGehee, who smacked a low line drive up the middle that hit Casilla. After lying nearly motionless on his side for almost a minute, Casilla rose to his feet and walked off the field under his own power, following assistant athletic trainer Eric Ortega.

X-rays were negative, showing no fracture. Casilla might have to rest a day or two but isn't expected to be absent much longer than that.

Casilla declined to pitch behind a protective screen.

"I wanted to feel like it was a real game," he said.

Giants manager Bruce Bochy joked that Casilla tempted fate by playfully taunting McGehee and Hunter Pence, who struggled to make contact.

"He's a very strong Christian, so we told him about the baseball gods," Bochy said.

Casilla admitted, "I was talking too much on the mound."

McGehee, who has barely begun his tenure as a Giant, wasn't offended by Casilla's hooting.

"It was all in good fun," McGehee said. "I'm just glad he's OK. I wish [a batted ball] had a steering wheel on it sometimes."

Bochy revealed that right-hander Sergio Romo, who has been striving to recover from a sore right shoulder, was hit on his throwing hand by a batted ball Wednesday while running in the outfield. However, Bochy said Romo should be able to throw off a bullpen mound for the first time this spring within a few days. Romo's hand wasn't seriously injured, and the reliever's shoulder was "getting stronger and stronger," Bochy said.

Chris Haft is a reporter for Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.