Vogelsong in hospital with eye injury after HBP

Vogelsong in hospital with eye injury after HBP

PITTSBURGH -- Pirates right-hander Ryan Vogelsong was being treated and evaluated at a local hospital after sustaining a left eye injury when he was hit by a pitch from Rockies starter Jordan Lyles on Monday afternoon.

Vogelsong was carted off the field alongside head athletic trainer Todd Tomczyk during Pittsburgh's 6-3 win at PNC Park. Vogelsong was taken to Allegheny General Hospital, the Pirates announced after the game, and further updates are unlikely before Tuesday.

Tomczyk said the injury was to "the eye itself, which includes the orbital" bone surrounding the eye.

"You never want to see that," second baseman Josh Harrison said. "You just pray for him and hope everything's going to be OK."

Vogelsong was batting with the bases loaded and one out in the second inning with Pittsburgh holding a 1-0 lead when the frightening incident occurred. Lyles' third pitch, a 92-mph fastball, appeared to strike him in the face or bounce off his helmet before ricocheting into his cheek.

"I saw the angle, and I was like, '[That] didn't look good.' I didn't necessarily see it catch him flush, but I saw it hit him. I heard [the ball hit his] helmet," said Harrison, who was on second base when Vogelsong was at the plate. "I didn't know if it was strictly helmet or if it ricocheted. Any time you see somebody get hit in the helmet, you flinch. That was my immediate reaction."

The hit by pitch drove in Francisco Cervelli from third base. After watching the moment unfold from the third-base line, Cervelli put his hands above his head and walked to the plate to check on Vogelsong.

"I didn't like the sound," Cervelli said. "It just scared me."

Vogelsong immediately fell in the batter's box, and team trainers rushed out to tend to him. Vogelsong got up to one knee and then stood on his own, a towel covering the area around his left eye. He sat upright in the cart with Tomczyk before leaving the ballpark in an ambulance.

Lyles said he thought Vogelsong was looking for an outside pitch, so the Rockies righty tried to throw the ball up and in to keep him from putting the ball in play.

"That's tough to see," Lyles said. "Hopefully nothing serious comes out of it and he's able to get back to his teammates shortly."

Vogelsong was making a spot start Monday afternoon after Sunday's Rockies-Pirates game at PNC Park was rained out. He pitched two scoreless innings before the injury forced him out of the game.

"It's difficult to see anybody in that situation. It was unfortunate," said Pirates ace Gerrit Cole, who has quickly become friends with Vogelsong and his wife, Nicole. "He's throwing the ball well and he was excited to pitch today. It kind of [stinks]."

Left-hander Jeff Locke entered the game as a pinch-runner for Vogelsong, and right-hander Wilfredo Boscan took over on the mound in the third inning.

With Vogelsong presumably headed to the disabled list and Boscan throwing four innings in relief, the Pirates likely will need to call up another pitcher on Tuesday.

"I think we'll probably have some conversations along those lines," manager Clint Hurdle said.

Adam Berry has covered the Pirates for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.