Just when it looked like Tommy Joseph turned the corner, bang. Friday, Joseph took a foul ball off the facemask early in the game, felt uncomfortable and foggy afterward and was pulled from the game. This forced the Phillies to place him on the DL on Saturday.
Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. expressed concern to reporters, including the Inqurier's Matt Gelb:
“It’s a shame because he had been really swinging the bat well. He was disappointed. We’re disappointed; hopefully it won’t be a long-term thing. He already felt better today. We’ll see.”
Joseph struggled with concussion related symptoms for most of last season only allowing him to play in 36 games. In those games, he batted only .179 with three homers. This season his numbers were up, hitting .255 with four home runs in 15 games.
Joseph was acquired in the Hunter Pence trade in 2012 and appeared to be the catcher who would replace incumbent catcher Carlos Ruiz in the future. The more these concussion related injuries occur the less likely that will ever happen. This might force the Phillies to move him to first base in the future.
Though the new rule about not running over the catcher would help Joseph from receiving more concussions, but foul balls could be what could keep Joseph from making the major leagues as a catcher.
Andrew Shipotofsky is writer for Philliedelphia. Follow him on Twitter @Ashipotofsky