Memphis Loses Two Outfielders in Collision

Redbirds Shane Robinson and Andrew Brown were injured in an outfield collision Saturday night. Get all the details on the injuries, recovery plans and the Cardinals roster moves.

Saturday's Memphis Redbirds contest in Des Moines against the Iowa Cubs began in a scary fashion. In the bottom of the first inning, a head-to-head collision occurred as Redbirds left fielder Andrew Brown and centerfielder Shane Robinson chased Cubs leadoff hitter Tony Campana's fly ball to short left-center off Memphis starter Lance Lynn.

The game was stopped 16 minutes as both players were attended to. Brown was taken off the field first while Robinson remained down on the turf. The two were transported to Des Moines' Mercy Medical Center for evaluation. An initial report provided before the conclusion of the 4-3 Iowa victory was that both players suffered concussions.

Robinson also suffered a facial injury. Reports indicate that he spent the night in intensive care and has a fractured orbital bone in his face. Surgery is most probable.

Since making his major league debut in May 2009, Robinson has dealt with misfortune. He missed the majority of the 2010 season due to a shoulder injury, playing in just 26 games for Memphis. The Cardinals removed him from their 40-man roster last October.

Cardinals farm director John Vuch called it a "frightening, horrific collision between the two on a ball that was falling into 'no-man's land' in shallow left-center field."

After speaking with medical personnel, Vuch offers a positive long-term prognosis.

"Shane is ultimately expected to make a full recovery," the farm director said Sunday morning. "We're quite optimistic that he'll be back on the field this season, but he likely will require surgery for his injuries, keeping him out of action for awhile."

Wisely, the Cardinals are playing it cautiously with Brown as well.

"Brown likely would have been available to play in under a week, but as an organization, anytime a head injury is involved, we want to be certain that they player is 100% before returning to action," Vuch explained. "By DLing him, it takes away any temptation on his part to feel like he needs to rush back prematurely."

Daryl Jones and Adron Chambers, the only outfielders on manager Chris Maloney's bench, entered the game to replace the two injured players on Saturday night.

Robinson and Brown both will be placed on the Redbirds' disabled list, with outfielder Jim Rapoport and infielder Freddie Bynum activated in their stead. Both replacements began the season on the DL with undisclosed minor injuries.

Rapoport, 25, spent most of the 2010 season with the Redbirds after having been called up from Double-A Springfield following Robinson's 2010 injury. Bynum, 31, was signed as a minor league free agent during the off-season after playing for the Orix Buffaloes in Japan in 2010.

Vuch could have been speaking for everyone when saying, "The entire organization will be keeping Shane in their thoughts and prayers in the aftermath of such a serious injury."

Brian Walton can be reached via email at Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Look for his weekly minor league column on Thursdays at Follow Brian on Twitter.

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