Mets' Church taken to hospital after suffering second concussion of year

ATLANTA -- While trying to break up a game-ending double play, Ryan Church of the New York Mets sustained a mild concussion when his head banged into the right knee of Braves shortstop Yunel Escobar on Tuesday night.

Church had a red scrape on the right side of his forehead, and the Mets said he would be taken to Piedmont Hospital for a precautionary examination since he sustained a concussion in spring training. The right fielder was not available for comment.

"He was pretty dazed when I got out there, pretty glazed over," Mets manager Willie Randolph told MLB.com. "We'll have the doctor check him out and hopefully he'll be all right. But again, he took a pretty good shot."

Escobar, meanwhile, was helped off the field and had a large wrap on his knee in the clubhouse. He shooed away reporters, only saying, "No DL."

The play happened in the ninth with Atlanta leading 6-2. After Carlos Beltran and Church provided a glimmer of one-out hope with back-to-back singles, Damion Easley hit a hard grounder back to the mound.

Manny Acosta fielded it and turned quickly to throw to second. Escobar took the throw and veered off to the side of the bag to make the relay to first. Church slid toward the shortstop, hoping to break up the double play, but his helmet collided with Escobar's right knee, which was up in the air as he completed his follow-through.

Church was sprawled face down in the dirt for several minutes, but he never lost consciousness. He finally rolled over and walked slowly to the Mets clubhouse.

This was his second concussion of the year. During spring training, he went down in a collision with teammates Marlon Anderson while chasing Andruw Jones' popup in a game against the Dodgers.

Church has been one of the best players for the up-and-down Mets, hitting .311 with nine homers and 32 RBIs.

The Braves weren't sure if Escobar would be able to play Wednesday. He's taken over the leadoff role and is batting .315 with four homers and 20 RBIs.

"It's sore," manager Bobby Cox said.

Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.