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Lyle Overbay has a unique perspective of what Stephen Drew is going through

03.19.13 at 2:01 pm ET
By

Lyle Overbay (AP)

FORT MYERS, Fla. – Lyle Overbay is trying to pay it forward, just like Aaron Hill did for him. And, in some ways, the efforts might help Stephen Drew deal with his current lot in life.

Because of a few unique experiences, Overbay can relate to what Drew is going through in regards to his concussion.

“To have somebody who has gone through it … Everybody is different, but it’s weird how it has progressed,” the Red Sox first baseman said. “You never heard about this when I broke in the league.”

Overbay not only experienced a concussion – having run into pitcher Brian Tallet in 2010 – but he was also teammates with Hill when the former Blue Jays second baseman lived through one of baseball’s most memorable bouts in the issue in 2009.

Hill suffered his concussion on May 29, 2008, and was never quite right again until the following offseason.

“I remember like it was yesterday,” Overbay of the moment Hill ran into David Eckstein. “I had a little episode a couple of years later and kind of took his advice. As a baseball player, or anybody, you want to fight to get through it and concussions are the one thing you can’t do that with. You can’t fight to break through it. Time is the issue. … I would have been trying to fight through it, too, if I didn’t take Aaron’s advice.”

“Even when [Hill] would start jogging, he would feel dizzy. There was one time in the offseason and his dog got away from him and he started jogging after him and he didn’t get dizzy. It was the same thing with me. You don’t feel normal than all of a sudden you do.”

Overbay has talked to Drew about the ups and downs of the injury, including how a reintroduction to the clubhouse environment — with louder sounds and increased activity — can trigger the symptoms. Overbay also understands that looks can be deceiving when analyzing the origin of the condition. As was the case with the first baseman, Drew stayed in the game after suffering his ailment.

He also was playing when Justin Morneau experienced his concussion in 2010, when the Minnesota first baseman collided at second base while trying to break up a double play against the Blue Jays.

“Absolutely. [Hill] even said it that he just needed a day,” said Overbay when asked if looks can be deceiving regarding incidents leading to concussions. “Look at Morneau. I saw that. I was watching and you’re thinking, ‘He’s a hockey player. He’s tough. He’ll be fine.’ You have to give it time and you can’t push through it.”

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