April 7, 2008
FOR MORE BARCA BLOG - CLICK HERE Alex Feinberg is as tough as they come.
MONDAY, APRIL 7- 11:15 PM
During the first game of a doubleheader Saturday in Oxford, the senior second baseman was on the receiving end of a 92 mph fastball from Ole Miss ace Lance Lynn that hit him just beneath the mouth. What was later determined to be a broken jaw, he ignored the injury and sprinted to first base as if the ball had never hit him.
"He's a tough kid," said head coach Tim Corbin. "He never went down on the ground (after being hit by the pitch) and his face was all over the place. You could see all the way through to his teeth and he said, 'I'm not coming out of this baseball game. Find a way to stop the bleeding and I'm playing.'"
After Vanderbilt's medical staff assessed the situation, Feinberg had to be taken out of the game and immediately returned to Nashville that night for surgery the following morning.
Before being sidelined, the Orinda, Calif., native was in the middle of his best season as a Commodore, ranking fourth in the SEC in hitting (.400) and third in the conference in on-base percentage (.521). He's also been a rock in the everyday lineup, starting all 27 games on the year before getting hurt as well as 62 of 67 games last season.
Not having his toughness in the lineup will be missed as the 'Dores prepare to get back on track with midweek games against Western Kentucky and Austin Peay as well as a weekend road tilt at Mississippi State.
"He's your grinder, he's your Phil Garner, he's your guy who's just a battler and never takes no for an answer," added Corbin. "His injury is a loss because there's a confidence level he plays with that goes to our team... The kid wants to play right now, but he's not going to play for another two weeks."
Feinberg is expected to be out until April 18-20 when the Commodores entertain Auburn. Utility man Brian Harris, who excelled as a starter during Pedro Alvarez's injury, will replace him during his absence.
Feinberg was unavailable for comment at Monday's media day (undergoing care while his jaw is wired shut), but emailed a thank you to Commodore fans for their support.
"I sincerely want to thank everyone who has supported me since my injury on Saturday," he said. "The cards I have received really mean a lot to me, and I just want everyone to know that I am doing well and should be back in action soon."
Alex Feinberg is as tough as they come.