Brandon McCarthy heads home

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Oakland Athletics pitcher Brandon McCarthy has been released from a Bay Area hospital less than a week after getting hit in the head by a line drive and undergoing surgery.

The A's say Dr. Peter Weber, the neurologist who performed the surgery at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco, and team physician Dr. Allan Pont agreed "McCarthy had made an excellent recovery and could be safely released from the hospital."

"From the bottom of our hearts, (my wife) Amanda and I want to thank everyone who was involved in responding to and treating my injury, starting with Dr. Weber and all the team's medical personnel from doctors Allan Pont, Elliott Schwartz and Jon Dickinson to the Oakland A's athletic trainers, as well as the other physicians and nurses who were on duty around the clock in the Critical Care Unit at California Pacific. We feel the same way about the ambulance driver and those who first met us at the hospital. We could not have been in better hands," McCarthy said in a statement.

"We also want to express our deep appreciation to our teammates, manager and coaching staff for their concern and encouragement during the uncertain times, and also want to thank all the A's fans who wished us well. It's times like these when you realize you have an extended family, and feel so fortunate. Now we look forward to continuing the healing process, and returning to baseball and our normal lives in the weeks and months ahead. Go A's!"

The 29-year-old McCarthy underwent two hours of surgery late Wednesday after a ball hit by the Angels' Erick Aybar struck the right side of his head. He experienced an epidural hemorrhage, brain contusion and skull fracture on the play.

"I think it's great. He's made some big strides in a few days and we're all very happy he's home," Athletics manager Bob Melvin said. "It's a huge relief. I was reflecting on when I was there at the hospital and we were like, 'How did we get here? He comes off the mound and it looked like we dodged one, that he was feeling OK. Then in the clubhouse later, same type of thing. Then the next thing you know he's having brain surgery. It was surreal. Very surreal.' So the fact that he's made the quick process he has and now that he's home, it's quite a relief to everybody here."

The A's said that McCarthy, Oakland's opening day starter, will remain in the Bay Area for the next three weeks.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.