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Lopez exits game with left rib contusion

September 14, 2018

KANSAS CITY -- Royals right-hander Jorge Lopez, who flirted with a perfect game last Saturday against the Twins, left Friday night's game in the fifth inning at Kauffman Stadium because of a left rib contusion.Lopez said after the 8-4 win over the Twins that X-rays showed no fracture. He also said

KANSAS CITY -- Royals right-hander Jorge Lopez, who flirted with a perfect game last Saturday against the Twins, left Friday night's game in the fifth inning at Kauffman Stadium because of a left rib contusion.
Lopez said after the 8-4 win over the Twins that X-rays showed no fracture. He also said he will have an MRI on Saturday morning.
"They say they didn't find anything [bad]," Lopez said. "Tomorrow they'll see if they see something more."
Lopez said he was injured on a high chopper off the bat of Willians Astudillo in the fourth inning. On the play, the chopper went over Lopez's right shoulder as third baseman Hunter Dozier and shortstop Raul Mondesi charged in. Dozier and Lopez appeared to bump on the play as Mondesi fielded the ball.

"That's exactly what happened," Royals manager Ned Yost said. 'When Dozier came in ... it was a play where we need more communication. Dozier needs to call him off and he didn't. I think they were both kind of going for the ball and Doz hit him, and Doz is a big boy. He's got a rib contusion right under the numbers."
Lopez added, "He hit me with his right shoulder by the chest. I just reacted to the ball. I didn't know it was going that far. I should not be there. He hit me pretty well."
Lopez finished the inning and didn't mention the injury to Yost or pitching coach Cal Eldred. He began the fifth inning, but he didn't appear to be himself as he gave up four hits and three runs.
Lopez said he had trouble breathing at times.
"If I breathe hard, it's bothering me a little bit," Lopez said. "It's not like a pinch. It's like tightness. Something that's really tight. Hopefully I can come back in six days. That's something I care about, my career."
Lopez had pitched four scoreless innings. With one out in the fifth, Eldred visited the mound and after talking with Lopez signaled for Yost and trainer Nick Kenney to come out. Shortly thereafter, Lopez left the field.

Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB.