[ED. NOTE: This is the first, of hopefully, many stories from the newest voice on FBb, Pat Kenney. Kenney, from a suburb of Syracuse, is currently attending Springfield (Mass.) College. Make sure to follow him on Twitter for more from Syracuse: @PRyKenney]
By Pat Kenney
SYRACUSE | Going 0 for 4 with a walk, was not the return Corey Brown pictured.
It was, has never been, about the stats for the Syracuse Chiefs outfielder though. It was just about being back in the lineup, back on the field, and back to feeling healthy.
"It was a good start and my body felt fine," said Brown on Thursday after his first game in a Chiefs uniform in over a month. "It was my first game back so it will take some time to get back into it."
Brown was hitless in the Chiefs' 11-inning 4-2 loss to the Columbus Clippers (Cleveland) on Thursday, but it was just his first game after injuring an oblique in mid-April. The last time he was in the Syracuse lineup was April 14 against LeHigh Valley.
He may not have produced at the plate, his final at-bat was his 15th strikeout of the season in the bottom of the tenth, but his approach looked good in the batting cage and in-game, while his base running showed signs of the pre-injury Brown. He stole second, his first theft of the year, with ease in the home half of the fourth.
Brown was in the top-5 of most of the major offensive categories last season in the International League and had 25 Triple-A home runs all told. He did get some time with the parent club, the Washington Nationals, in 2012 and hit his first big league homer as well. Brown missed 30 of Syracuse's 40 games during his time on the DL this season and is 9-or-39 with two home runs, three doubles, five RBI, four walks, and 15 strikeouts overall in 2013.
"It's good to have him back in the lineup," said Syracuse Manager Tony Beasley, "He provides a threat both offensively and defensively."
His hardest contact of the evening was a lineout in the eighth inning with two on and one out.
"You can't dwell on things like that," said Brown, "It's my first game back and I'll get back into it."