Tuesday night was far from just another day at Appalachian Power Park in West Virginia. In the sixth inning of the game between Miami Marlins Low Class-A Greensboro Grasshoppers and the West Virginia Power, Ramon Del Orbe was struck by a line drive and taken to the hospital. Del Orbe had been cruising along in what would have been his second impressive six inning outing when it happened. Now, the future of his baseball career is in question.
Ramon Del Orbe signed with the Marlins organization in the summer of 2008 out of Cotui, Dominican Republic, the same town that produced Duaner Sanchez. Standing just 5'11'' and weighing around 180-190 lbs., Del Orbe is far from a menacing presence on the mound, but he throws a decent circle changeup and that led to a very successful 2012 season with Jamestown. This season has definitely been much more of a challenge for Del Orbe, but before the injury it seemed as if he was really turning the corner on a rough season to date.
With the Pirates prized $5 Million outfielder from the 2011 draft, Josh Bell, at the plate with one out in the sixth inning, Ramon Del Orbe threw a pitch that will change not only his baseball career, but his life. Bell lined the pitch right back up the middle off of Del Orbe's head, causing Del Orbe to collapse and need a stretcher to be carted off the field. There have been murmurs around baseball about pitchers wearing some sort of protective headgear, which I have been against in the past, but maybe an injury like this is the tipping point.
Ramon Del Orbe is set to undergo skull surgery Thursday afternoon right across from the field at CAMC. It will be rough for the Grasshoppers to play this week knowing that their teammate will be in the hospital. I'm sure players and fans alike will miss watching Del Orbe, his wispy mustache, and his loopy change up on the mound every fifth night. Be sure to keep the Del Orbe family in your thoughts and prayers as you enjoy your weekend.
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