A mere seventy days after his teammates wondered whether the life, never mind the career of Brandon McCarthy had just ended in front of them, The San Francisco Chronicle reports that McCarthy has recuperated sufficiently for his doctor, Dr. Michael Collins, director of the Sports Medicine Concussion Program at the University of Pittsburgh to clear him to return to playing baseball.
McCarthy was hit in the head with a line drive off the bat of Angels infielder Erick Aybar on September 5. After the fourth inning accident, he had curled up in pain on the Oakland Coliseum mound, but managed to walk off the field under his own power. The right-hander, whose skull was fractured, subsequently required emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain caused by internal bleeding.
The Opening Day starter for the A's in 2012, McCarthy's winter challenges include not only getting back into baseball shape, but finding a team for the 2013 season. Following his 8-6 season, McCarthy's contract expired, leaving him as a free agent. The questions now are which clubs will take the chance on him, as he of course has not returned to the mound since his injury, and what kind of contract offers he will receive following such a major physical setback. Returning to Oakland is not out of the question.
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