Home-plate umpire Ron Kulpa was hit in the facemask by a foul tip in the bottom of the second inning, and he tried to continue before asking out of the game in the middle of the third. Kulpa was said to have a slight concussion after the game.
Kulpa, who started the game behind the plate, was hit flush in the head by a ball that caromed off the bat of first baseman Ty Wigginton. There was a brief delay to attend to him, and O's assistant athletic trainer Brian Ebel pronounced him fit before the game continued. The next two half-innings progressed uneventfully.
Then, before the bottom of the third, Kulpa left the field under his own power. Crew chief Dale Scott, who started the game as the first-base umpire, donned the facemask and took over behind home plate. Third-base umpire Mike DiMuro continued in the same capacity, and second-base umpire Jerry Meals moved over toward first base.
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less