Buffalo Bisons Catcher Survives Swift Backswing Injury, Determined to Return to Field


At the crack of dawn on Saturday, Payton Henry, the catcher from the Buffalo Bisons – a Triple-A baseball team, opened his eyes in a familiar yet unwelcome setting – a hospital room in Syracuse, New York. The circumstances that led up to his sudden hospitalization are as unusual and unfortunate as they come. The previous evening, while in the middle of an intense baseball game against the Syracuse Mets, Henry had been at the receiving end of a powerful backswing from Mets’ third baseman, Pablo Reyes.

The cheese had just been delivered in the seventh inning when the sheer force of Reyes’ swing knocked Henry down. One moment he was on his feet, energized to bring the match home, the next, he was on the ground, dazed and hurting. Athletic trainers rushed immediately to his aid, their faces laced with concern for their fellow player.

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The high-intensity game at NBT Bank Stadium, which saw the Mets leading at a score of 4-2, was abruptly halted following this unfortunate incident. It seemed unimaginable to continue a match when a player was in such a dire situation. Spectators, players, and officials alike were unified in their sympathy and concern for Henry.

Later that evening, the Bisons offered a glimmer of hope in the tense atmosphere. “Scary incident,” they concurred, but they affirmed that Henry was “alert and appropriately responsive” upon arrival at the hospital. The sigh of relief that whispered across the baseball community could almost be felt in their carefully penned words.

Saturday dawned brighter when news streamed in of Henry’s discharge from the hospital. The Bisons took the opportunity to update on his progress, announcing that he was “doing well as he continues to rest and recover.” Henry himself gave a virtual nod to his fans, posting on the social platform X, “I’m doing pretty good and hoping to recover as quick as possible.” The words of gratitude he expressed for the prayers and concern he received from people far and wide mirrored the player’s strong spirits and determination.

Gratitude was also extended to the Mets and the medical support team at Upstate University Hospital, who went above and beyond to ensure that Henry received the best of medical attention.

At 26, Henry, who was drafted in the sixth round of the 2016 amateur draft by the Milwaukee Brewers, is no stranger to the highs and lows of his sport. He’s battled through the ranks of college baseball at BYU, and he’s ready to fight to get back on the field. Despite the setback, it seems clear that this incident is merely a hurdle Henry is determined to clear in his ongoing journey in baseball.