If you witnessed the 9th inning of the Reds 4-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians yesterday, you’re well aware of the “incident” that occurred, and likely won’t be surprised by my prediction for what will happen next. Someone in the Reds lineup—possibly more than one someone—is going to take a fastball off the shoulder blade.
Aroldis Chapman lost control of his first delivery to Nick Swisher during the final inning on Monday afternoon, sailing a fastball over hitter, catcher, and umpire into the netting of the backstop. Chapman followed that with an even faster pitch, this one about two centimeters from Swisher’s mouth. Rightfully, Swisher was less than pleased with the left-handed Cuban. If someone were throwing a guaranteed skull-fracture anywhere near my face, my demeanor wouldn’t be so jolly, either. Fortunately, a brawl didn’t ensue. Jawing and icy stares, however, did. And retaliation will.
According to the unwritten rules of baseball, between one and three unlucky Reds batters will pay the price for Chapman’s latest lack of control/judgment. But who will incur the impending chin music? I took a statistically-rooted gander through the lineup…sort of.
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