Colorado Rockies pitcher Ryan Feltner is your new baseball hero that you’ve probably never even heard of.
Feltner, who is in his third season in Major League Baseball, hasn’t exactly set the world alight on the mound.
In eight starts this season, he’s got a 2-3 record with a 5.86 ERA and just a 1.32 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Hardly eye-popping numbers.
But it turns out he’s darn well maybe the toughest pitcher in all of baseball (all due respect to White Sox closer Liam Hendriks).
Feltner struggled in his start again the reigning National League champion Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday. He walked four batters and allowed four runs in the first inning.
But little did he know things would get far worse in the second. Not because of his pitcher, but rather because of some extremely bad luck.
Feltner retired the first two batters he faced in the second before allowing a double to Bryce Harper. That brought Nick Castellanos to the plate.
With a 1-1 count, Castellanos hammered a line drive right back at Feltner, striking him in the head. Feltner immediately dropped to the ground and Castellanos arrived at first with a stunned and scared look on his face.
Thankfully, the Rockies righty eventually walked off the mound, though he appeared a bit woozy in the process.
As it turns out, it’s incredible that Feltner was even able to walk off.
Rockies manager Bud Black told reporters that Feltner suffered a fractured skull in the incident.
“What we found out was he has a small skull fracture and he’s concussed … but overall, he’s fine,” Black said. “The feeling’s that it could have been worse, obviously. But he’s going to miss some time.”
Thankfully, Feltner’s injury wasn’t bad enough to keep him down.
“Ryan was communicating with players via text, so he was pretty stable by the time the game ended and guys were getting home, 11 o’clock, midnight. He was texting with our medical staff, his parents, and we texted last night. He was obviously in a concussion state, but he was fairly lucid,” Black continued.
With toughness like that, he may want to consider a second career in hockey.