Nationals minor league catcher Brian Jeroloman remains hospitalized two days after a vicious collision at home plate during a playoff game with Class AA Harrisburg. A team spokesman said he is “improving every day.” The Nationals did not provide a specific diagnosis for Jeroloman or reveal whether he had suffered a concussion.
Wednesday night, Jeroloman stationed himself in front of home plate as a groundball rolled to second and Erie’s Brandon Douglas sprinted home from third. Jeroloman caught the ball and turned to tag Douglas, who is listed at 6-feet, 200 pounds. Douglas leveled him at full speed, shoulder first. Jeroloman lost control of the ball and his helmet flew off his head as if shot out of cannon. Douglas crawled back to touch home plate to score the run.
Jeroloman was clearly dazed after the plate and suffered a cut on his chin. Douglas suffered no significant injuries. Some have already used Jeroloman’s bulldozing as evidence that collisions at home plate should be outlawed.
Jeroloman, 28, came to the Nationals in a midseason trade from the Pirates. He had spent the first seven years of his professional career in the Blue Jays’ minor league system. Splitting time between Harrisburg and Class AAA Syracuse, Jeroloman quickly developed a reputation among teammates as a well-prepared and intelligent catcher.
Harrisburg and Erie are tied 1-1 in the Eastern League semi-finals. The best-of-five series will continue tonight in Harrisburg.