Betancourt's jaw bruised on comebacker vs. Royals

Club says no immediate signs of concussion symptoms

Betancourt's jaw bruised on comebacker vs. Royals

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Rockies veteran right-handed reliever Rafael Betancourt asked that folks not "make this a big deal" after being hit on the right side of his jaw with a line drive during the sixth inning of Thursday's 13-2 victory over the Royals.

The Rockies announced he suffered a contusion.

Betancourt escaped the potential for greater damage because he used his glove to deflect a ball hit by the Royals' Brett Eibner with two out in the bottom of the sixth. After the infield single, Rockies head athletic trainer Keith Dugger sprinted to the mound to attend to Betancourt, who rose to his feet and eventually walked off the field. Betancourt wanted to stay in the game.

The Royals' medical staff examined Betancourt, and the Rockies announced that he did not immediately display signs of a concussion. However, he will be watched closely.

"I don't want to make this a big deal," said Betancourt, who noted that he was happy it wasn't as serious as last year when the Reds' Aroldis Chapman was hit by a line drive on the same field. "I'm fine. I don't know about later. It's part of the game. First time it happened to me, getting hit in the face, but I'm lucky that the ball hit the tip of my glove before it hit my face. I was just trying to react."

Betancourt, 39, joined the Rockies in 2009 and later became the team's closer. He suffered a right elbow injury in August 2013 that required Tommy John surgery. He is attempting to make the team as a non-roster invitee. Betancourt has pitched 3 2/3 innings in four appearances and given up one run and five hits, with three strikeouts.

Any such incident sparks a search for positive signs. One was the fact Betancourt ate a meal in the clubhouse after the game.

"My face is kind of how you feel when they take out one of your teeth -- but I ate, so it's fine," Betancourt said with a chuckle.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, and like his Facebook page, Thomas Harding and Friends at www.Rockies.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.