Alex Avila injury: Tigers catcher taken to hospital with possible concussion

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Avila left the game in the fifth inning after taking a foul ball to his catcher's mask.

Detroit Tigers catcher Alex Avila left Thursday night's game early and was taken to a Cleveland-area hospital to undergo tests that will determine if he suffered a concussion, according to Chris Lott of MLive.

Later the Tigers announced Avila would return to Detroit rather than travel with the team to New York City for a series against the Yankees, Iott reported.

Avila took a foul ball off his catcher's mask in the fourth inning with Nick Swisher at the plate. He was attended to by trainer Kevin Rand and remained in the game until the end of the inning. Backup catcher Brayan Pena then took over for Avila at the start of the fifth inning. The Tigers went on to win the game, 10-3, to clinch their 12th win in a row.

Avila, 26, has done a nice job handling Detroit's talented starting rotation this season. He is having a down year offensively, hitting just .198 with a .633 OPS.

It is unclear if Avila will miss any time. He has already been placed on the 15-day once this season with a left forearm contusion. If Avila is forced to go on the DL with a concussion, look for Detroit to call up Bryan Holaday from Triple-A and for Pena to make a majority of the starts.

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