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Arolids Chapman impresses

Mar 5, 2010, 12:05 PM EST

The Reds’ phenom may not face another team until Monday, but he pitched in his first game yesterday. An intrasquad affair. Word is that he looked good.  This stood out the most:

Chapman escaped the jam when he fired a 97-mph heater to strike out
Ryan Hanigan swinging. Next batter Wilkin Castillo saw a couple of
fastballs, broke his bat when he fouled off an 85-mph slider and swung
and missed on a perfectly thrown 82 mph changeup.

“I had no chance,” Castillo said of the final pitch. “He threw hard and was sneaky, too.”

All of the press on Chapman has been about his fastball, with some talk of a nascent changeup.  Speed doesn’t last all that long — even guys like Lincecum lose a few m.p.h. relatively early in their careers — but if Chapman can really master his change he’s going to be terrifying.

Can’t wait to see the guy pitch in person.

  1. Phil - Mar 5, 2010 at 12:13 PM

    They’ve got Mario Soto in camp to teach him the change and Soto had a good one, so…

  2. themarksmith - Mar 5, 2010 at 12:25 PM

    Unfortunately, I’ll be in Lexington this summer starting grad school, but I’ll be making trips back to Louisville to see him pitch (assuming he ends up there by June, which I imagine he will).

  3. Josh Fisher - Mar 5, 2010 at 12:30 PM

    Wilkin Castillo has a .275/.316/.387 line in 2124 minor league at-bats. I don’t think I exaggerate when I say this is the closest he’ll get to his 15-minutes. It’s safe to say he’d have no chance against just about anyone who figures to play in the majors, much less this monster.

  4. Old Gator - Mar 5, 2010 at 12:39 PM

    Be sure to get there late, Craig. Chapman is starting, but not until the sixth inning.

  5. GimmeSomeSteel - Mar 5, 2010 at 1:13 PM

    Ryan Hanigan? Wilkin Castillo? Come on. All we’ve been hearing about Chapman so far is his intrasquad results against backup catchers and guys who will be hard-pressed to make the AAA roster (especially if they’d say anything negative about the Designated Star). It’s an old tactic the Reds are using here, yet writers fall for it all the time.

  6. Charles Gates - Mar 5, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    Ok, so these guys weren’t A-Rod or Evan DiMaggio or anything…but it’s kind of like when your boss says, “Hey, I’ve got a really easy question for you…” You’re supposed to know the answer, and if you do, great, you’ve done your job. If you don’t, well, it says something pretty clearly.

  7. Joey B - Mar 5, 2010 at 3:21 PM

    It’s the annual rite of spring. They’ll be some 25 y.o. quad-A player that hits 8 HRs during ST and their fans will think they have the next Willie Mays. They’ll be another star pitcher getting shacked around because all he wants to do is throw FBs to strengthen his arm. The fans will wonder if he should be cut.
    ST is almost meaningless other than to assess if a player has recovered from injuries. I loved the article about Casey Kelly he other day, but you can’t tell a thing without two years in the minors, let alone 2 weeks in ST.

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