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3.16.2011

Sad News for Minor League Manager Luis Salazar


I've tried to imagine today what it would be like to actually lose an eye. I would likely lose my mind.

This is why I have a tremendous amount of admiration for the bravery of Luis Salazar, the Atlanta Braves minor league manager who was nailed in the face by a line drive during a Spring Training game on March 9. He ended up losing his left eye.

Salazr, 54, was leaning against the railing on the top step of the dugout during a game between the Braves and the St. Louis Cardinals when Brian McCann fouled one in his direction. Salazar was unable to get out of the way, falling head-first back into the dugout.

Play was halted nearly 20 minutes while Salazar was airlifted to an Orlando hospital. He regained consciousness on the way and was treated for multiple facial fractures, but unfortunately, doctors were unable to save his eye.

McCann felt awful, unable to return to the game after the accident. He visited Salazar in the hospital and has kept in touch:

"It’s a crazy, crazy thing that happened. So unfortunate. You feel hopeless."

Salazar plans to return to camp at some point the Spring, before the minor league season begins on April 8. Unbelievably Brave.

[USA Today]

3 comments:

Laura said...

This is so sad for him, his career and his family. Unfortunately, my husband had something similar happen to him as he played HS ball in MN in the middle '90s.

His HS team's assistant coach was hit in the eye by a batted ball during pre-game warm-ups, as the coach was throwing BP. He just wasn't far enough behind the screen. My husband was not the one that hit the ball, but has repeately said how the teammate that did hit the ball had a very hard time with it and the whole team was ultimately effected!

Megs said...

That's so sad that he lost his eye. I guess on the bright side, he survived and his brain is intact.

UnHoly Diver said...

I live in Lynchburg, VA, where Salazar is set to manage the Braves Carolina League affiliate. GM Paul Sumwall has said there’s not a specific timeframe for when Salazar will return, but they(the doctors and Braves officials) do anticipate him being here at some point early on in the season, if not at the beginning, certainly within a few weeks of when the season starts on April 8th. I fully expect him to get a rousing welcome whenever he does get back.
On a personal note, I've been blind in my left eye since I was about a year old(one of the wonderful side effects of being born with cerebral palsy), so I can empathize in some way with Salazar. It won't be an easy road for him, but I expect he'll come through it with the help of family, friends and his doctors.