Jeffress somehow dodges, snares wicked liner

Veteran reliever falls to the ground but avoids injury

May 28th, 2019

MINNEAPOLIS -- Brewers reliever has seen the replay. He prefers not to see it again.

Jeffress narrowly avoided catastrophe when he caught Willians Astudillo’s line drive back to the mound in the fifth inning Monday night at Target Field in Milwaukee’s 5-4 victory over the Twins. The play ended the inning and Jeffress didn’t return to pitch the sixth, but the right-hander said afterward that there was no physical issue.

Jeffress was able to bend backward at the last moment as the ball neared his head, and he caught the liner. He was down on his back for several minutes before leaving with trainers.

“I made a good pitch down in the zone, and he just hit it well,” Jeffress said. “Hit it right back up the middle. I literally thought it was going over my head. Last second, I just reacted. That’s all I could do.”

Jeffress appeared shaken up, but the team announced that his departure was at simply manager Craig Counsell's discretion. Three other relievers combined with Jeffress for 4 1/3 scoreless innings in the win, with Junior Guerra replacing Jeffress to start the sixth inning.

Jeffress owns 2.87 ERA in 15 appearances this season.