PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Brad Penny didn't give up all that many hard-hit balls in his third Spring Training start on Monday. The problem was, the best-struck ball of the afternoon struck him.
The right-hander took a Jason Bay line drive off his right forearm, but stayed in the game to pitch 3 2/3 innings in the Cardinals' 6-5 loss to the Mets at Tradition Field. He also was hit on the left shin by a ball off the bat of Fernando Martinez. Penny said after the game that he was feeling fine, though he had ice on both his forearm and his shin.
"I felt pretty good," Penny said. "It was nice that I got my work in. They were wanting to take me out of the game. If I'd gone out and not been able to throw strikes, they probably would have. It's Spring Training. You've got to get your work in."
Manager Tony La Russa acknowledged that he and head athletic trainer Barry Weinberg seriously considered removing Penny after the pitcher was hit in the first inning.
"He said he would let us know if it affected any of his throws," La Russa said. "He kept working, and it never really stiffened up enough to [remove him]. He's stiff now, I'm sure. But he was OK."
Penny finished with three runs allowed on six hits in 3 2/3 innings. He struck out one and walked one, needing 71 pitches to get 11 outs.
"I don't know how many ground balls got through [for hits], four or five," he said. "They really didn't hit the ball too hard, except the one that hit me."
Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.