Gomez sits after getting hit in head
Twins outfielder hoping to return Sunday against Tigers
MINNEAPOLIS -- Outfielder Carlos Gomez was out of the lineup on Saturday evening with a lingering headache after being hit in the head by a throw in Friday night's game against the Tigers.
Gomez said he did not sleep well Friday night and showed up to the Metrodome with a headache on Saturday. He did not take batting practice and said he would spend the game "chilling" in the dugout.
The throw came from Tigers catcher Ivan Rodriguez and hit Gomez in the left side of the helmet as he was sliding into second. Gomez also hit the other side of his head on Placido Polanco's knee as he was sliding through the bag.
"When I run the bases, I watch home plate when I run to second base," Gomez said. "I see him catch the ball and then throw, and then I turn my head straight. If I still was looking at home plate, he would have hit me right in the face, but I moved my head to the other side, and it hit me in the helmet. If I didn't have the helmet, I don't know what would have happened, he hit me so hard."
Gomez was confident that he would be back for Sunday's game, but acting manager Scott Ullger took a more cautious approach.
"We'll have to wait and see about [Sunday]," Ullger said. "If he still has a headache, it might be better to give him Sunday and then he'll have Monday off, too. I'd sure like to have him in the lineup, but we'll let somebody else play [Saturday]."
Ullger has some experience with being hit in the head -- last July during a game in Cleveland, he was hit in the jaw with a foul ball as he was sitting in the dugout.
"I've been hit in the head before with a helmet on, and you'd be surprised how much it hurts," Ullger said. "I've also been hit without a helmet in the jaw and you'd be surprised how much that hurts."
Gomez was in good spirits Saturday, but he expressed disappointment at the timing of his injury.
"I've been hitting good and feeling good and then this happened," Gomez said.
The steal was Gomez's second of the game, giving him his fourth multi-steal game of the season. He is tied with Houston's Michael Bourn and Colorado's Willy Taveras for the Major League lead in steals with 13.
Leslie Parker is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.