Tanaka returns to Yankees after being hit in the head with line training

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New York Yankees right-hander Masahiro Tanaka was back at Yankee Stadium on Sunday, one day after being hit in the head by a Giancarlo Stanton’s bat stroke.Tanaka’s rapid return – and his relatively minor injuries – is even more astonishing when you consider the speed at which this speed controller was moving when it touched Tanaka.

“The ball came back, I think they said 112 mph,” Yankees left-hander James Paxton told reporters on Sunday.

Tanaka’s official diagnosis is a mild concussion, manager Aaron Boone told reporters.

WATCH | Tanaka hit on the head by line training:

New York Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka was alert and responsive after being hit in the head by a line kick from teammate Giancarlo Stanton. 0:53

“He arrived around noon today and was in a very good mood,” said Boone of Tanaka. “I had a very good night’s sleep; no loss of appetite. We are encouraged where it is and we will take it day by day, but I hope it is not something that will take too long. Since he got to the hospital, he’s been pretty much symptomless and feeling good… (and was) in a good mood, I think at this point we are really encouraged. ”

The scene was quite different the day before, as coaches and teammates immediately ran to the mound at Yankee Stadium to help Tanaka, who remained on the ground for several minutes. The Japanese launcher was able to leave the field with some assistance.

Two-star Tanaka was 11-9 with a 4.45 ERA in 32 games (31 starts) last season with New York. The 31-year-old has a 75-43 record with a 3.75 ERA in six seasons with the Yankees.

“Was so scary”

The other big news on Sunday was Paxton, who started live bat training for the first time after recovering from back surgery in February. He told reporters that he is back to health. The 31-year-old is entering his second season with New York. He posted a 15-6 record – setting a better career record for wins – with an average of 3.82 earned runs and 186 strikeouts in 150 2/3 innings last season.

On Sunday, he threw behind a protective screen during batting training. It was a problem on Saturday as Tanaka was not using the screen because pitchers have the option of using it or abandoning it for live hitting sessions.

“What happened yesterday was so scary. After seeing this happen, I just wanted to play it safe, especially the first time there, “said Paxton about using the screen. “Fortunately, that doesn’t happen very often, but I just wanted to play it safe the first time. Next time, it will no longer be a simulator game setting, so the screen will not be there. But, especially after yesterday, it was a conscious decision just to have it there for security. ”

“Obviously, it is incredibly unfortunate what happened today,” said Boone on Saturday after Tanaka was hit, before adding later. “Unfortunately, it is sometimes the risk that accompanies it. You’re doing your best to protect the guys, but you’re not going to have a screen there all the time. ”

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