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Merrifield feels 'awful' for Bumgarner after injury

Royals second baseman's liner fractures Giants ace's left pinky
MLB.com @FlannyMLB

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Royals second baseman Whit Merrifield was just as much in shock as everyone else regarding the news that Giants left-hander Madison Bumgarner suffered a fractured left pinky finger after being hit by a Merrifield line drive on Friday.

Bumgarner was making his final start of Spring Training when he was struck by a liner off the bat of Merrifield in the third inning. Bumgarner left the game almost immediately after being examined by the team trainer.

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SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Royals second baseman Whit Merrifield was just as much in shock as everyone else regarding the news that Giants left-hander Madison Bumgarner suffered a fractured left pinky finger after being hit by a Merrifield line drive on Friday.

Bumgarner was making his final start of Spring Training when he was struck by a liner off the bat of Merrifield in the third inning. Bumgarner left the game almost immediately after being examined by the team trainer.

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Merrifield said he has been trying to get in contact with Bumgarner since leaving the game in Scottsdale and learning of the fracture late Friday afternoon.

"I feel awful, this coming in his last start of the spring," Merrifield told MLB.com by phone. "Obviously, there was no intent. I just feel terrible. He's my kind of player, my kind of pitcher. He goes out there and grinds and does whatever it takes to win. I loved watching him pitch."

Merrifield and Bumgarner played against each other and with each other as teenagers growing up in North Carolina.

"He's a great guy," Merrifield said.

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

San Francisco Giants, Kansas City Royals, Madison Bumgarner, Whit Merrifield