Salty takes licking, but back in lineup Saturday

Salty takes licking, but back in lineup Saturday

Salty takes licking, but back in lineup Saturday
PHILADELPHIA -- Twelve stitches and less than a day after some odd bounces left him hurt, catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia was back in the Red Sox's lineup on Saturday.

Saltalamacchia received 12 stitches on Friday after a ball clipped him on the left ear while he was catching in a 6-4 loss to the Phillies on Friday night at Citizens Bank Park. A Daniel Bard pitch ricocheted off Phillies hitter Ty Wigginton, then into Saltalamacchia's left arm before hitting his ear.

"It was definitely scary anytime it hits you in the head like that," Saltalamacchia said. "It was pretty direct on after it hit off my arm. I went to the doctor [Friday] night, went to the hospital, and they said everything came back negative, no signs of any concussions or anything. I just had to get some stitches, and good to go.

"It hurts. But as far as any kind of pain moving or hitting or anything, it doesn't bother me."

Saltalamacchia said he has to keep the area clean a few times a day. In making sure Saltalamacchia was not injured beyond what was visible, he went for a CT scan.

Saltalamacchia told manager Bobby Valentine on Friday night he should be good to go for Saturday.

"Salty checked out well at the hospital [Friday] night, he texted me as soon as it was over, said it was ready to go," Valentine said. "Got the clearance, but we waited until he came out today. When he got in the training room, trainers gave him the green light."

Saltalamacchia wears a traditional two-piece catcher's mask. He said he tried the hockey-style catcher's mask -- which may have prevented the injury -- in high school, but was not comfortable with it. He acknowledged how unlikely the incident was.

"It was weird because when it went to go hit [Wigginton], originally, when you throw the ball in, you flinch away [from the batter], just so the backspin doesn't hit you," Saltalamacchia said. "That's kind of what I did. It hit his forearm and perfectly hit my forearm and went right into the ear.

"It went straight down and sliced [the ear] and then, in the middle, it went through. It ripped through and they had to stitch in the back, too."