Alex Cobb,Tampa Bay Rays pitcher hit in the head:Baseball fan wants more safety for pitchers

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - It all happened in the blink of an eye, and what Davis Williams watched gave him a sinking feeling he knew all too well.

That's because Davis had seen it happen before.

A line drive shot in the top of the fifth inning of the Tampa Bay Rays game against Kansas City at Tropicana Field struck pitcher Alex Cobb on the side of his head.  He collapsed on the mound as players, coaches, and trainers rushed the field.

Williams said it was terrible to see, and even worse to hear.

"It pretty much sounds like when the ball hits the bat," Williams said.  "The ball is hitting bone, you know?  It's quite scary."

A season ticket holder, Williams was at the Trop in May when a Rays batter hit a line drive into the head of J.A. Happ of the Toronto Blue Jays.  The pitcher suffered a fractured skull.

"I've seen two of these now in person," Williams said.  "Something needs to be done."

Cobb was rushed by ambulance to Bayfront Medical Center, where he was diagnosed with a mild concussion.  Rays superstar pitcher David Price was the first player to see Cobb at the hospital.

In a tweet, Price said "Cobber is way more tough than me!  Laughing at jokes and the name they gave him!!  Please keep him and his family in your prayers."

Jeremy Hellickson, another pitching teammate of Cobb's, could be seen praying on the railing of the dugout as medical staff loaded the injured pitcher onto a stretcher.

Hellickson visited Cobb in the hospital following the game, which the Rays won, 5-3.

"He's acting normal," Hellickson said.  "He's the same old Cobb right now.  Laughing and joking."

It's the second accident involving a line drive off a pitcher's head this season at the Trop, and some Rays fans suggested it may be time for some kind of new safety measures.

"You have to.  It's 60 feet away," said Williams.  "The ball comes back at 100 miles-an-hour," he said.  Williams hopes that it doesn't take a more serious incident for baseball to come up with a solution to a problem that appears to be getting worse.

"It's just a matter of time before somebody really gets hurt badly," Williams said.


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