Adam Greenberg, a baseball player who was hit in the head by a pitch during his first major league at-bat for the Chicago Cubs in 2005, struck out in his second ever appearance in the major leagues.
Pinch hitting for Miami Marlins left fielder Bryan Petersen on Tuesday, Greenberg struck out after facing three knuckleball pitches in the bottom of the sixth inning thrown by New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey. Wearing a number 10 jersey, Greenberg swung at the second and third pitch thrown by Dickey, who said on Monday, “I am going to treat him like a big leaguer and that is why he is here.”
Greenberg’s story resurfaced in headlines in September when he was tapped to replace the injured Gabe Kapler for team Israel in the World Baseball Classic qualifiers in Jupiter, Fl. In his only at bat of the qualifiers, Greenberg was walked on a full count by South Africa’s Carl Michaels and scored off of a single by Shawn Green, coupled with a South African fielding error.
Around the same time, an online campaign called “One at Bat” had fans rallying for Greenberg to be given another shot at the majors. Not having played for a major league organization since 2008, Greenberg was offered the second chance last Thursday, when the Marlins surprised him with a one-day contract announced live on NBC’s Today show.
Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen suggested last week that he might start Greenberg but ultimately settled for the pinch-hit opportunity. Despite the strikeout, Greenberg returned to the dugout smiling and greeted by high fives and hugs from his teammates-for-the-day.
“Life throws you curveballs,” Greenberg told the AP shortly before his shining moment on Tuesday. “Mine threw me a fastball at 92, and it hit me in the back of the head. I got up from it, and my life is great.”