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Aroldis Chapman’s fastball 1, Wrigley Field protective netting 0

Aug 6, 2011, 11:50 AM EDT

aroldis chapman netting

Aroldis Chapman throwing a 99-mph fastball is nothing new, but that pitch sailing wide of the catcher and ripping through the protective netting behind home plate is a scary thought for the people paying big bucks for those seats.

That’s exactly what happened last night at Wrigley Field, although luckily no one was sitting directly behind the plate and (as shown by Chris Calo’s screen shot) the shredded netting was the only thing harmed by Chapman’s heat.

Chapman reined in his fastball enough to strike out two batters in a scoreless inning against the Cubs, giving him a 1.40 ERA and ridiculous 34 strikeouts in 19 innings since returning from the disabled list.

As for avoiding future incidents of the protective netting not being able to protect against Chapman’s fastball, I suppose all the ballparks could double-up with a second layer just to be safe. Or maybe it was an isolated incident in which the Wrigley Field netting already had a slight tear that made it weaker than usual. After all, while Chapman has MLB’s fastest fastball last night was hardly the first baseball–whether thrown or fouled back–to make contact with the netting traveling in the high-90s.

  1. halladaysbiceps - Aug 6, 2011 at 11:59 AM

    Bob Uecker: “Just a bit outside…”

    • kopy - Aug 6, 2011 at 12:04 PM

      It looks like Chapman is getting squeezed a bit out there.

  2. jimbo1949 - Aug 6, 2011 at 12:57 PM

    Looks like it may have frayed from rubbing the top of the wall.

  3. sknut - Aug 6, 2011 at 1:33 PM

    On the opposite end the Twins have given fans in the Left and Right Field stands protective armor for when Blackburn pitches.

  4. metalhead65 - Aug 6, 2011 at 1:54 PM

    just a note from those people who defend dusty baker, yesterday he had the rookie frazier attempt a sacrifice bunt and he failed miserably so today he is not playing. anyone care to guess how many times he was asked to do it in the minors? if you guessed 1 congrats you are a winner! what reasonable person would ask a guy to do something he never has before? these are the kinds of decisions he makes all the time!

  5. chadjones27 - Aug 6, 2011 at 1:57 PM

    Tony LaRussa cut a hole in the netting. There was a fan in the stands that he wanted Chapman to throw at

  6. nesuperfan - Aug 6, 2011 at 2:22 PM

    Simple solution: Chainmail netting.

  7. nothanksimdriving123 - Aug 6, 2011 at 6:21 PM

    “Chapman reigned in his fastball…” Indeed, he may be king, but that should be “reined in his fastball.” Sumday yull be perfikt like mee!

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