Crain suffers bruised right knee

Crain suffers bruised right knee

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Right-hander Jesse Crain suffered a bruised right knee Thursday afternoon, when he struck by a line drive while pitching in a Minor League game.

Crain started Triple-A Rochester's contest against the Orioles' Triple-A Norfolk squad and was scheduled to pitch one inning. But with just one out in the inning, catcher Guillermo Quiroz hit a liner up the middle that struck the outside of Crain's right knee. Crain was able to pick up the ball and throw Quiroz out at first base. He then exited the game and was taken back to the Twins clubhouse.

Team physician Dr. Dan Buss examined Crain and determined that X-rays were not necessary. Crain will be re-examined on Friday, and the doctor told him they'll wait and see how he feels before determining when he'll pitch next.

"I would assume I'll throw on Sunday," Crain said. "That's unless the doctors say otherwise."

Crain said that this was the first time in his career he's been struck by a ball while on the mound.

"It hurt right away and just got real tight, like it was hard to put pressure on it," Crain said. "But it feels all right now."

There was a large bruise on the side of Crain's knee when he first entered the clubhouse, but the pitcher said it had calmed down quite a bit after icing.

Thursday's outing was just the fourth of the spring for Crain, who missed nearly all of last season after undergoing shoulder surgery in late May. While his shoulder is no longer a concern, the right-hander has been working to get the feel back in all of his pitches. And he wasn't having the easiest time with that in his outing Thursday before he was struck by the line drive.

"My arm felt fine," Crain said of his outing. "I think I'm going through one of those times where I'm going through a bit of dead arm. All day today I felt sluggish. That happens in the middle of Spring Training after you do so much arm work. It's probably time to get a day to rest."

Kelly Thesier is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.