CHICAGO -- Kelly Shoppach had to leave Friday night's contest with right knee soreness, but the Rays catcher appears to be fine.
He left the game after getting injured in the bottom of the seventh. Rays reliever Joel Peralta had thrown wildly to home with one out, prompting Brent Morel to try to score from third. Shoppach chased the ball and quickly turned to make a snap throw to Peralta, who covered the plate to get the sliding runner for the second out of the inning.
Shoppach came up limping and John Jaso took over at catcher. He injured his right knee early in the 2010 season when he blocked home plate while tagging out the Yankees' Curtis Granderson, who collided with him. That led to arthroscopic meniscus surgery to his right knee and, basically, put him on a bad road for the season. He missed 49 games before getting reinstated from the disabled list on June 4.
Shoppach said he has not seen the play that caused him the pain Friday night, but he had a familiar feeling afterward.
"You know, same feeling I've felt in the past, so immediately I was panicked, frustrated right out of the chute," Shoppach said. "I needed to walk. I needed to virtually walk it off. But we didn't have time for that, right in the middle of an at-bat in the middle of a game. If it had been between innings, I'm not sure I would have even come out of the game. I needed some time because it didn't feel good at all."
Last year, Shoppach called Ron Porterfield the morning after his knee got injured and told the team's head athletic trainer "something is wrong." Then they had an MRI done, which revealed the damage. So the plan for Shoppach's knee was the same after Friday night's game. If he woke up Saturday morning with swelling, they would have headed off to have an MRI done.
"I woke up about every hour last night to check and see if there was any swelling," Shoppach said. "I just didn't know, because that feeling there was the same feeling I had in the past. I knew immediately I needed to have a break. That's not a very comfortable feeling."
Shoppach went through some on-the-field catching tests prior to Saturday's game and everything turned out fine.
"No ligament damage in the major ligaments," Shoppach said. "My leg's intact. It's strong. ... That's the most trauma I've put on my knee since the last surgery, so that feeling coming back was a scary feeling."