Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Athletics players and staff surround starting pitcher Brandon McCarthy after he was hit in the head on a line drive by Los Angeles Angels shortstop Erick Aybar at O.co Coliseum. Credit: Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE

Athletics' McCarthy Released From Hospital Following Brain Surgery

The A's righthander walked off the field under his own power after being hit in the head with a line drive, and he is recovering after undergoing brain surgery Wednesday night.

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FanGraphs: 3 Things On Brandon McCarthy

Not only is it FanGraphs, but it's Jeff Sullivan, so you know it's worth reading. And not only is it Sullivan, but it's on the topic of a pitcher getting hit by a comebacker, a topic on which he has first-hand experience.

Brandon McCarthy was hit by a comebacker on Wednesday. He wasn't the first pitcher to get hit this season, and he wasn't going to be the last. What makes this a story is the severity of the injury -- McCarthy required brain surgery to repair a skull fracture and brain hemorrhaging. It's the most serious injury on a comebacker in the majors since at least Juan Nicasio last year, which was one of the most serious since Bryce Florie.

Sullivan makes three points in his article for FanGraphs: 1. Brandon McCarthy can still be lucky, even as he's extremely unlucky; 2. Don't forget that this scenario is horrible for Erick Aybar, too; and 3. It's long overdue to protect the pitchers.

Hitters stand 60’6 away from the pitchers and wear helmets to protect them from errant fastballs. Pitchers stand 60’6 away from the hitters and wear hats to protect them from line drives that come off the bat just as fast, or faster, than the pitch itself.

Hats. That's all they have. And, unfortunately, it takes an incident like this to get the conversation started, just like it takes a catcher getting liquefied at home plate to start that conversation.


Brandon McCarthy Undergoes Brain Surgery After Line Drive

Wednesday afternoon, Brandon McCarthy was struck on the head by an Erick Aybar line drive, and the initial prognosis was positive after he walked off the field under his own power. But after a CT scan last night, McCarthy underwent brain surgery to clear up a hemorrhage and repair a skull fracture. From the A's official Twitter account:

RHP Brandon McCarthy, who was struck on the right side of the head by a batted ball yesterday, underwent surgery last night.

The surgery included the evacuation of an epidural hemorrhage and stabilization of the skull fracture.

The surgery lasted nearly two hours. McCarthy underwent another CT scan on Thursday, which showed the condition had improved and the hemorrhage had subsided. According to the A's, he is alert and awake, and he is resting in the critical-care unit of his hospital.

Dan Straily, who was scheduled to start for the Sacramento Rivercats in the first game of the Pacific Coast League playoffs, is likely to replace McCarthy on the active roster. But, obviously, that is a minor concern at this point, as McCarthy's injury seems to have been far more serious than most observers thought.


Brandon McCarthy Set For CT Scan; Might Miss Start

Oakland Athletics righthander Brandon McCarthy was hit in the head with a line drive off the bat of the AngelsAlberto Callaspo during Wednesday’s game. According to Joe Stiglich of the Oakland Tribune, that wasn’t the only hit he took:

McCarthy banged the back of his head on the ground when he landed, and though he sat up quickly, he appeared dazed as A’s head trainer Nick Paparesta rushed to check on him.

Though McCarthy eventually walked off the field under his own power, he appears likely to miss at least one start. He’ll be examined further:

McCarthy was scheduled for a CT scan at nearby Summit Medical Center, and the A’s issued a statement Wednesday night saying McCarthy was conscious and doing well but would stay overnight for observation. He will not fly on the team charter Thursday to Seattle.

McCarthy’s next start is scheduled for Tuesday in Anaheim. A’s manager Bob Melvin didn’t want to speculate on whether McCarthy would miss time, but given the delicate nature of any head injury, it would appear the pitcher could be sidelined for Tuesday’s outing and perhaps longer.

The A’s are already down one starting pitcher due to the PED-related suspension of Bartolo Colon. They’re in a tight race for an AL wild-card spot and can ill afford to lose McCarthy for too long.

For more on the A’s, please visit Athletics Nation and SB Nation Bay Area.

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