BALTIMORE -- Marcus Stroman said it felt like his arm exploded, yet the Blue Jays star somehow escaped a scary incident at Camden Yards with just a contusion on his right elbow.
Stroman was struck on his right arm by a 107.5-mph line drive off the bat of slugger Mark Trumbo during Saturday's 7-2 victory over the Orioles. The sickening thud of a line drive making contact with flesh and bone had everyone fearing the worst, but Stroman came away relatively unscathed.
For a brief moment, Toronto's No. 1 pitcher this season feared the worst. He hit the ground and rolled around, clearly in pain, but once he started to get his bearings and was visited by trainer George Poulis, Stroman realized everything was going to be OK. In this case, he felt lucky.
"It was just scary right at first," Stroman said after the game. "Trumbo hits the ball unbelievably hard, and it just caught me right on my elbow, so obviously you panic right at first. It felt like my arm exploded."
I'm good. I'll be ready to rock for my next start. Trumbo hits absolute missiles. Lol shout to the squad for the W! @BlueJays
There was an audible gasp from the crowd when Stroman was struck by the ball. Players on both sides of the field watched and hoped for the best -- for that first minute or two, it didn't look good. Stroman buried his head into the grass and screamed in pain, but he quickly passed a series of on-field tests that assured the righty and the Blue Jays that nothing was broken.
"Once I started to squeeze my hand while I was on the ground and kind of feel that I had the strength in my wrist and my hand, I kind of felt a little bettter," he said. "That's what urged me to want to stay in the game."
Stroman recovered so quickly that he started to lobby acting manager DeMarlo Hale to remain in the game. Hale clearly was happy his star pitcher avoided a serious injury but wasn't having any of what Stroman was trying to sell. Hale kept Stroman's glove hidden behind his back while the product of Duke University made his case. At one point Stroman appeared to say "one pitch, one pitch," but Hale understandably did not waver.
"You could say that, but he wasn't getting that far," Hale said, when asked if Stroman tried to talk him into staying in the game. "I understand, he's a competitor. That's what we love about Stro. Maybe, if he got hit somewhere else, but in my experience, when you get hit on the arm, you better be cautious."
Stroman was sent for X-rays, which came back negative, and he is considered day to day. He finished with three strikeouts over 1 2/3 innings and because he only threw 30 pitches, Stroman suggested that he might lobby to start in the series finale at Boston on Wednesday. That seems unlikely, but unless something changes over the next couple of days, all signs point to Stroman being able to make his next scheduled start at home Friday night vs. the Tigers.
"I'm good, I'm good," Stroman said. "I'm ready to rock. I'll be good. Do everything I can to get the swelling and soreness out over the next couple of days and then be ready to pitch either Wednesday or Friday."
Gregor Chisholm has covered
the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen
to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.