In the first game between the North Siders and South Siders this season, Chicago White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko had to exit the game early after being hit in the face — in the face! — by a pitch from Cubs starter Jeff Samardzija.
Here’s a looping GIF of Konerko going down via WorldofIsaac:
Konerko hit a two-run homer in the first inning off Samardzija, calling into question the intention of the pitch. The HBP was in Konerko’s very next at bat, although the count was 2-2. Samardzija has had pretty great control this year and has only hit one other batter this season and it was Jason Heyward after he had hit a home run earlier in the game. As a result of the beanball, White Sox announcer Hawk Harrelson didn’t shy away from saying that Samardzija should be drilled in his next at bat or in the next series.
Luckily, Konerko appears to be okay. He suffered a small laceration above his left eye and has some swelling. He is currently undergoing further tests.
Konerko is hitting .367 with eight home runs and 23 RBI this season.