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Yanks’ Gardner fires helmet, carom splits lip, 6 stitches

June 9, 2019
Home plate umpire Chris Conroy, left, gives a ball to Boston Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez, center, as New York Yankees Brett Gardner, right, reacts during his at-bat in the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox, Sunday, June 2, 2019, in New York. Gardner grounded out. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

CLEVELAND (AP) — This was not the kind of hard hit Brett Gardner hoped for.

Fuming after his bid for extra bases was caught Saturday, the New York Yankees’ sparkplug fired his batting helmet against a dugout wall in Cleveland— only to have the protective gear ricochet back and smack him in the face.

The result: A gashed, bloody lower lip that took six stitches to close.

“It was just frustration building up, we gave up the lead,” Gardner said. “You hit a ball like that that’s an out, it’s just frustrating.”

Gardner was 0 for 4 in the 8-4 loss to Cleveland. He’s hitless in his last 22 at-bats, dropping his batting average to .217.

Indians right fielder Jordan Luplow made an outstanding catch to rob Gardner in the sixth inning.

Gardner said getting the stitches hurt more than being hit with the helmet.

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