SEATTLE -- Second baseman Nick Franklin was back in the Mariners' lineup for Monday's series opener against the visiting Astros. The rookie infielder sat out Sunday's game after taking a knee to the back of the head from teammate Justin Smoak during a fly-ball collision in the sixth inning of Saturday's 6-2 win over the Rays.
The two collided on a single hit to shallow right field. Franklin immediately fell to the turf, where he was surrounded by teammates and trainers.
"Honestly, it happened and I didn't know what to think," Franklin said. "I definitely didn't feel great, but I felt weird for a second. But other than that, once the trainer got there, he told me to relax and stay still."
The injury proved to be not as severe as it appeared, and Franklin was able to remain in the game, hitting an RBI double later in the inning.
"I can feel it but nothing really outrageous or anything out of the normal," Franklin said before Monday's game.
Manager Eric Wedge confirmed that Franklin could have started Sunday's game, but that it made sense to rest him while also giving Dustin Ackley time at second base to balance the lineup against lefty Matt Moore. Franklin did enter the game as a pinch-hitter, striking out.
Greg Johns is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB as well as his Mariners Musings blog. Jacob Thorpe is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.