The journey back for Kyle Farmer was a painful one.
The Minnesota Twins infielder was reinstated from the 10-day injured list Wednesday after missing 25 games due to a face injury caused by a hit-by-pitch, the team announced.
Farmer suffered the injury April 12, when Chicago White Sox pitcher Lucas Giolito hit him in the face with a 91.6 mph fastball. You can see the pitch here, but be warned — it is a disturbing sight.
The damage was later detailed in an interview with Minneapolis’ KARE 11, and the final tally sounds brutal. Farmer reportedly needed 35 stitches, four root canals and wires to put his teeth back into place:
“Right when I went down, I remember just feeling my teeth covering my tongue in the back of my mouth,” Kyle said. “It’s kind of gruesome. I thought I was swallowing my four bottom teeth.”
The scary part is it could’ve been even worse, as Twins manager Rocco Baldelli told reporters the team was more worried about a fractured jaw, specifically saying, “Thank god we got the news that was better than what we were expecting.” A jaw fracture would’ve likely sidelined Farmer for much longer than the month that he missed.
Farmer’s wife, Courtney, reportedly had an awful time, too, as she told KARE 11 that she was flying at the time of the injury and found out what happened through a Gameday app and video after the fact:
“We were on a plane heading to New York, and so I was keeping up with the game on my phone, and I was reading and see ‘Hit by Pitch’ and in parenthesis … ‘Injury delay,’ so I go back and watch to see what happened because he gets hit all the time, and I was hoping it wasn’t anything bad, but when I see the delay on there, I knew it had to be bad,” she said.
Like many watching from home, Courtney watched the replay in horror, unaware of the extent of Kyle’s injuries.
“I was able to keep pretty calm,” she remembered. “I saw the video after the fact, so I was able to see him get up and walk off the field, which helped me.”
The injury interrupted Farmer’s first season with the Twins, who acquired him in a trade from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for pitching prospect Casey Legumina last offseason. In his first 11 games with Minnesota, the seven-year veteran hit .233/.286/.355 with one homer and five RBI.