Last Friday, Philadelphia Phillies highly-rated pitching prospect Matt Imhof suffered a freak eye injury during what was supposed to be a routine post-game workout.
Imhof was struck in the face while using a rubber resistance band anchored to a wall after its mounted base suddenly broke off as the lefty was putting his reps in.
Unfortunately, the second-round pick who has been playing his ball for Phillies single-A affiliate Clearwater, lost his right eye as a result of the injury despite doctor’s best efforts to save it. But, Imhof is handling the tragic situation as well as any true professional could, and took to Instagram on Thursday to share the news of his prognosis, as well as some incredibly inspirational words.
As many of you know on Friday June 25th I had an accident. A large price of metal hit me in the head/eye resulting in a fractured nose, 2 fractured orbital bones, and most significantly, the loss of vision in my right eye. I was immediately taken to the ER and then transferred to Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, the #1 eye hospital in the world. That night, the doctors informed me that the damage to my eye was extreme and essentially that my eye had been crushed like a grape. The doctors told me they were going to do everything possible to reconstruct it but in all likelihood I would never regain sight in my right eye.
The first surgery was somewhat a success but overall nothing had changed, so after discussions with my family and my doctors, it was decided that the best chance I had to live a normal life was to have my right eye removed and have a prosthetic one put in. This decision was not an easy one to make but to me it seemed like the right one so on Tuesday afternoon I went forward with the surgery.
I’m currently still in Miami recovering from surgery but I’m doing well. This has been the hardest week of my life but I’ve had amazing support from my family and friends to help me get through it. For those who have been wishing me well, your support has not gone unnoticed and I appreciate everyone who has kept me in their thoughts and prayers. I had the best doctors in the world doing their best work on me and for that I am grateful as well. Although this injury has been tough it could have been much worse…I’m lucky to still have vision in my left eye…I’m lucky that i didn’t have brain damage…and I’m lucky to be surrounded my the most loving and understanding people in the world.
I just wanted to write this message to let everyone know that even though I suffered some bad luck, I’m not dead. I’m gonna be alright, I’m gonna persevere, and I’m gonna succeed. It takes more than this to bring me down. Again thanks to everyone for the support.
That last part of Imhof’s statement, which I bolded, says all you need to know about this young man’s character and perseverance. Those words be on posters someday. It’s incredible and refreshing that someone could have such a positive outlook like that on the heels of such a horrific accident and injury.
Here’s hoping his recovery continues to go swimmingly. Hopefully, that amazing resilience will propel 2014’s 47th overall draft pick to take the mound once again, sooner rather than later.
We’re all thinking of you, Matt. Keep Phightin’ the good Phight.