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Thairo Estrada leaves game after getting hit in head by pitch


Thairo Estrada took an 84-mph changeup to the helmet and immediately crashed to the dirt in the fifth inning of Saturday’s game against the Cubs.

Estrada, San Francisco’s starting shortstop with Brandon Crawford sidelined due to a knee injury, tried to duck out of the way of Mark Leiter Jr.’s pitch. Manager Gabe Kapler and an athletic trainer immediately rushed out of the dugout to check on him.

Estrada initially laid motionless, but eventually opened his eyes and moved to a sitting position. Trainers Dave Groeschner and L.J. Petra helped him off the field.

Estrada is hitting .264 on the season with a team-high 15 stolen bases. He’s played in 89 games, tied for second-most on the club. He’s also been hit by eight pitches, tied with Crawford for most on the team.

Down Crawford and Estrada, the Giants’ middle infield depth is significantly depleted.

Rookie Jason Vosler replaced Estrada as a pinch runner, then in the field at shortstop. Saturday was Vosler’s first game at the position since June 13, 2015 at the Low-A level. The current starting shortstop at the Triple-A level is Isan Díaz, who has 19 home runs in 65 games for Sacramento.

 

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