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It’s not clear yet if Red Sox pitcher Houck needs surgery after line drive to the face, Cora says

MLB: New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox

Jun 16, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Tanner Houck (89) reacts after getting hit in the face with a line drive during the fifth inning against the New York Yankees at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

BOSTON -- Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora doesn’t know yet whether pitcher Tanner Houck will need surgery for a facial fracture he sustained when he was hit below the right eye by a line drive from the New York Yankees’ Kyle Higashioka.

“He’s going to see the doctor at the end of the week, and then we’ll go from there. I don’t know if surgery is needed or not,” Cora said before Boston faced New York in the opener of a split doubleheader.

Higashioka led off the fifth inning and lined Houck’s 92 mph sinker straight up the middle, hitting the 26-year-old right-hander. Houck received stitches and was checked at a hospital after he walked off the mound on his own with a towel covering his face.

“As I’m running down the line, I hoped he got at least something on it before it hit him,” Higashioka said. “It’s just not something you want to see. I hope he’s still doing good. From what I hear from the guys, he’s alright.”

Cora said teammate Garrett Whitlock visited Houck.

“He finally got some rest. He’s doing better,” Cora said. “He may stop by later today if he’s feeling better.”