It was painful even to watch. Tigers ace Justin Verlander nailed Jordany Valdespin in the groin area with a 94 mph fastball in the top of the fifth inning on Monday. The utility man left the game and walked gingerly back to the clubhouse.

“Everything is good, working good, normally,” Valdespin said after being checked by doctors. “Everything is great.”

The sometimes brash utility infielder had led off the game with a home run off of Verlander, who struggled with his command all day. Valdespin grounded out in the second. In the fifth, he squared to bunt and the fastball dropped him. He writhed on the ground in front of home plate for several minutes.

Valdespin said he did not think it was intentional. Verlander said that he was just trying to come in on Valdespin and the ball got away from him.

“He took a hack the first pitch, already hit one bomb, next one he total squared at me and I am like, ‘Oh God this isn’t gonna be good,’” Verlanders said. “Right out of the hand I was like, ‘Oh (s---), it’s right at his (groin).’”

Valdespin has a reputation as a cocky young player — he sometimes wears a T-shirt with a picture of himself and often wears a hat off the field with his initials and uniform number — who can upset veterans.

That did not appear to be the case Monday. Verlander said he did not think Valdespin was out of line with his home run trot. Terry Collins said he had no issue with Verlander.

“I don’t think so, I am sure Justin was working on things, as all stars do,” the manager said. “In that situation, he’d just took a big swing and Jordany was faking bunt. He came out of the batter’s box.”

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