Reds' Marte removed with facial cut after hit by teammate De La Cruz's warmup throw

Cincinnati Reds' Noelvi Marte tosses his arm guard after being hit by a pitch during the second inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners in Cincinnati, Monday, Sept. 4, 2023. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)

CINCINNATI (AP) — Reds third baseman Noelvi Marte sustained a facial cut when hit on the face with a throw by shortstop Elly De La Cruz when the rookies were tossing before Saturday’s game against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Marte was distracted by starting pitcher Carson Spiers as Spiers and catcher Tyler Stephenson walked off the field after warming up. De La Cruz didn’t notice while throwing the ball. He covered his head with his arms as the ball struck Marte in the face.

Marte had a bloody nose and was treated by an athletic trainer. The lineup cards already had been exchanged, and he was replaced at third by Spencer Steer, who originally scheduled to start at second.

Alejo López, promoted on Saturday when outfielder Stuart Fairchild was placed on the COVID-19 injured list, took over for Steer at second.