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Omar Infante hit in face by Heath Bell pitch (Video)

Kansas City Royals second baseman Omar Infante was hit in the face with a pitch from Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Heath Bell in the bottom of the seventh inning on Monday night. A two-seam fastball appeared to get away from Bell and hit Infante square in the chin.

Omar-Infante-hit-in-face

Fortunately, Infante did not suffer any type of serious injury. He needed six stitches to close a cut on the lower left side of his face but avoided a concussion or fracture.

“I think he’s going to be OK,” Royals manager Ned Yost told reporters, via MLB.com’s Dick Kaegel. “We’re just going to have to have to take a little bit of time with him. He could hardly talk last night, he couldn’t even open his jaw and that’s what made me nervous, but it’ll be OK.

“It’s a lot better than it could have been, that’s for sure.”

Infante was diagnosed with a strain of his right jaw because of the impact, so hopefully he won’t see any long-term effects from that. He is still being evaluated, but it sounds like the the veteran infielder was lucky. Here’s hoping he has a speedy recovery.

Umpire Jeff Nelson’s error on Omar Infante call costs Yankees (Video)

The Yankees were hurt by a brutal call during the eighth inning of ALCS Game 2 against the Tigers on Sunday that cost them two runs in a 3-0 loss.

Tigers second baseman Omar Infante was advancing from first to second on a two-out single to right by Austin Jackson. Right fielder Nick Swisher threw into second to catch Infante off the base, and Robinson Cano tagged him out. Unfortunately, second base umpire Jeff Nelson called Infante safe, keeping the inning going for Detroit.

The next better was pinch-hitter Avisail Cabrera, who blooped a single to right to score Infante and make it 2-0. Yankees manager Joe Girardi went out to replace pitcher Boone Logan, and was ejected after arguing with Nelson about the awful call.

Miguel Cabrera followed with a single to score Jackson, giving the Tigers a 3-0 lead. They eventually got out of a bases loaded jam and escaped down just 3-0, but not before the blown call cost them two runs.

Girardi was ticked off about the call after the loss.

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MLB Hot Stove Analysis: Dan Uggla-Omar Infante, John Buck, Jake Westbrook

The Florida Marlins made a pair of moves, sending All-Star second baseman Dan Uggla to the Atlanta Braves in exchange for All-Star utility man Omar Infante and left-handed reliever Mike Dunn.  Florida took the money saved on Uggla and signed catcher John Buck for three-years and $18 million.

This is a great move for the Braves, who give themselves a right-handed power bat to supplement their current two best power hitters, Jason Heyward and Brian McCann, both lefties.  The Braves enjoyed Infante’s versatility in the field last season, using him at second, third, shortstop, left field and right field.  However, with Infante coming off a stellar season (.321/.359/.416 in 471 ABs) and having a similar player in Martin Prado, the timing was perfect.  Mike Dunn, if you’ll remember, was one of the players included in the second Javier Vazquez-to-New York trade.  He will be 26 next season and is more of a throw-in than a prospect.

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Omar Infante Surprised by Omar Infante’s Selection to the All-Star Game

The MLB All-Star teams were announced on Sunday and the selections resulted in snubs like always. While leaving Joey Votto off the NL team was by far the most egregious error, adding Omar Infante to the team easily qualifies as one of the worst All-Star decisions I’ve ever seen. See, every year a player or two makes the All-Star game when they don’t deserve to be there — it’s usually the result of the rule that all teams must have a representative in the game. Charlie Manuel’s decision to add Omar Infante had nothing to do with this usual issue; it was a sole act of idiocy on the part of Manuel. In what has to be a first ever, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel added a utility infielder to the All-Star team. The selection was so ridiculous and asinine that even Omar Infante himself was stunned by the news:

“I got a call from [General Manager] Frank Wren, and the first thought I had was that I got traded,” Infante said through an interpreter. “I was kind of nervous and choked up. By the time Frank told me I was going to the All-Star game, I thought he was joking around. It took, like, five minutes for me to realize I’m going to the All-Star game.”

That’s because he has no business going there! I’m not out to knock Infante nor his value and contributions to the Braves; Infante’s having a good year and he’s an important piece for Atlanta, having played five positions this year. But utility men have no place at an All-Star game. Infante has no business being on the roster while Joey Votto and his NL best OPS has to pray he wins a fan vote. If Charlie Manuel really wanted to add another middle infielder to the team then he should have gone with Rafael Furcal, Dan Uggla, or Rickie Weeks. Any of those guys belonged on the All-Star team. But Omar Infante? Maybe give him a team award at the end of the season like “Most Inspirational Player” or something. Just don’t put him on the All-Star team especially when so many other players are far more deserving.

Sources:
Five Braves named All-Stars, including Infante [Atlanta Journal Constitution]
Photo Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images