The Tigers suffered a big loss before a pitch was even thrown in Baltimore last night; during batting practice Alburquerque was playing catch with a teammate with his back to home plate when an Orioles batter launched a fly ball to left field.
Alburquerque never saw the ball, which caught him flush on the head, knocking him to the field. Team trainers quickly responded to his injury and called for an ambulance to take Alburquerque to the hospital in Baltimore. He was taken out on a stretcher and was complaining of some dizziness.
FSD Video: Alburquerque Hit By Fly Ball
Once at the hospital Alburquerque was diagnosed with a mild concussion and was kept over night for observation. Manager Jim Leyland said that there was some internal bleeding, which made the decision to keep him overnight a must.
With the number of concussions on the rise across all sports, Major League Baseball created a new disabled-list just for players who have suffered concussions. A team may place a player on this DL for seven days while the player recovers.
When Alburquerque was released from the hospital on Saturday morning, the Detroit Tigers placed him on the 7-day DL with a concussion. The measure was taken because concussions are frequently difficult to come back from, see Justin Morneau, and when dealing with someone's brain the safest route is usually the best one.
The Tigers sent Alburquerque back to Detroit to recuperate and get himself ready for the upcoming homestand, however he will not be flying aboard Red Bird II or on any commercial plane, he will be driving back to Detroit. Those who suffer concussions are barred from flying on airplanes because the constantly changing pressure around them could cause harm to their brain.
There is no timetable set on his return to the team as the Tigers will want to play things safe with their talented rookie. He is also being put on anti-seizure medication as a precautionary measure.
With Alburquerque heading to the DL the Tigers made a move to fill the hole he left in the bullpen, recalling Ryan Perry from Toledo. Since being sent down to Toledo earlier in the season, Perry has appeared in 20 games and has accumulated numbers like this; 3-0, 3.03 ERA, 7 SV, 30 SO and .207 AVG.
Perry is not the long term answer the Tigers are looking for in the bullpen, but he will be a good replacement while Alburquerque is on the DL. He has already joined Detroit in Baltimore and will be available to pitch Saturday.