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Mets’ Burnitz Leaves Game Vs. Yanks

June 15, 2002

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NEW YORK (AP) _ Jeromy Burnitz left the New York Mets’ game against the Yankees with a headache Friday night after being hit in the helmet with a pitch.

``I feel all right,″ Burnitz said. ``I’ve got a bump on my head. It’s not fun to get hit square in the head, but I’m OK.″

This was supposed to be a warmup for Saturday’s main event, when Roger Clemens comes to Shea Stadium to hit and pitch for the first time since beaning Mike Piazza and throwing a shattered bat in his direction in 2000.

But once again, a Met got beaned.

With two outs and a man on first in the fifth inning, Sterling Hitchcock hit Burnitz in the top of the helmet with a 1-2 pitch.

``I don’t think he was throwing at his head,″ Mets manager Bobby Valentine said. ``With a man on first, I don’t think he was trying to hit him.″

The ball bounced out toward the pitcher’s mound as a trainer and Mets Valentine came out to tend to Burnitz. Burnitz yelled at Hitchcock as he walked to first base and home plate umpire Mark Carlson warned both teams.

``For sure, that was unfortunate,″ Yankees manager Joe Torre said. ``It was a scary thing when it happened. I can’t fault the umpires for taking it safety first.″

Carlson talked to Mets starter Steve Trachsel before the start of the sixth inning. Trachsel was booed when he didn’t hit Derek Jeter to open the sixth.

Burnitz played in the field in the sixth inning before leaving in the seventh with a headache. X-rays were negative and Burnitz is day-to-day with a bruise.

The Yankees rallied to win the game 4-2 on Robin Ventura’s two-run homer in the 10th inning.

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