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Thread: More positive reaction on Chapman

  1. #46
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by lollipopcurve View Post
    Not exactly. He hit it down the leftfield line. One writeup described it as a bloop.
    I stand corrected.

    I see there is a video of his hit as shakey as it might be, earlier in this thread but it does look like he sliced it down the LF line on the first pitch. Smart on Alonzo's part. It was probably going to be his best chance to get wood on the ball. As a LH you don't want to spend too much time staring at those intimidating pitches

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  3. #47
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    From Redszone favorite Joe Poz.

    http://joeposnanski.com/JoeBlog/2010...an-cincinnati/
    Player of the Day: Aroldis Chapman, pitcher, Cincinnati.


    GOODYEAR, Az. – We live in a world where there just aren’t many surprises. We know who will win the Academy Awards before they win. We hear about the best college football and basketball players long before they reach college. We hear rumors about the remarkable capabilities of the iPad months before the thing comes out.

    So, no, there just aren’t too many revelations in our lives.

    Maybe that is why the spring training phenom still electrifies us. Here it is, a cool gray day in Arizona. The Cincinnati Reds play the Kansas City Royals. There are a couple thousand people in the stands, maybe. There’s no buzz in the stands. How could there be any buzz? The Reds and Royals playing on a Monday afternoon in a spring training game under gray skies in Arizona?

    And then: Aroldis Chapman steps on the mound. You have probably heard Chapman’s story. He is a 22-year-old left-handed pitcher from Cuba. He tried to defect from Cuba in 2008, was arrested, was given a reprieve and then successfully defected in Amsterdam. He eventually signed with the Cincinnati Reds for more than $30 million, which seems like a startling amount of money for someone who has never pitched in the big leagues.

    And then: You watch Aroldis Chapman pitch.

    “I mean, holy cow,” says longtime Kansas City scout Art Stewart.

    Holy cow. There was a time in baseball when baseball phenoms would just show up, when blazing fast and switch-hitting sluggers would wander out of the Oklahoma mines and 17-year-old pitchers throwing 100 mph would walk off of farms in Iowa. But now – you can follow baseball prospects through high school, through college, through the minor leagues, you can see film on them on the Internet, you can hear scouts talk about them, you can find prospect lists that go all the way to No. 2,000.

    And then here comes Chapman. He’s tall and lean – he looks taller than the 6-foot-4 that is listed in the media guide. He picks up the baseball to warm up, and he throws so easy, like he’s skipping a rock on a lake. The ball popped hard into the glove. The next one popped harder. Kansas City manager Trey Hillman was only half joking when he used that old line about how Chapman’s pitches “sounded good.” They really did sound good.

    But the amazing part was the ease … there was no grunting, no straining, no laboring. You hear that line all the time about athletes who look as if they were born to do something. Chapman struck out David DeJesus on a hard-sweeping slider that seemed to break two feet. He struck out Chris Getz on a 100-mph fastball that sliced the outside corner – anyway Stewart clocked the pitch at 100 mph. Another scout clocked it at 102. Another got it at 98. Chris Getz’s speed approximation: “It was moving.”

    Two batters later Chapman struck out Rick Ankiel on a slider that Ankiel missed by so much he had to be rebooked on a later flight.
    Watching Ankiel trying to hit Chapman was somewhere between comedy and tragedy; you got the sense that if Ankiel faced Chapman 100 times, he would strike out 100 times.

    The Ankiel at-bat was especially poignant because there was a time, not long ago, when Ankiel was that left-handed pitching phenom, the 19-year-old kid who had struck out 416 batters in just 298 minor league innings. No, you never know exactly how the phenom’s story will play out.

    On a day like this, really, anything seems possible.

    “I would say Chapman has the best young left-handed arm I’ve seen since Herb Score,” Art Stewart says, and here he is referring back to one of my heroes, Score, who as a 22 and 23-year-old for the Cleveland Indians led the American League in strikeouts. That was in 1955 and 1956. Score seemed to be on his way to becoming one of the greatest pitchers in baseball history – Sandy Koufax before Sandy Koufax – when he got hit in the eye on a line drive by Gil McDougald.

    But, Art Stewart concedes, even the Herb Score comparison isn’t quite right because Score had a famously violent motion. Chapman makes you think he could throw 115 mph if he was really trying.

    Chapman has already made his goals known: He wants to be the best pitcher in the world. So, sure, he was thoroughly unimpressed by his two-inning, one hit, three strikeout game in Goodyear where he may or may not have hit 100 mph on the radar gun.

    “I wasn’t worried about how hard I threw,” he said. “But I did (throw 100), it’s just one of those things.”

    It’s a funny thing: Every year, there are a couple of teams that are hot preseason choices, and this year’s teams seem to be Seattle and Cincinnati. The Reds have a good and fairly young middle of the lineup – Jay Bruce, Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips – some promising young pitchers like Johnny Cueto and Homer Bailey and a couple of proven veterans like Scott Rolen and Aaron Harang.

    The Reds, like most teams trying to break through after a long dry spell, could use something amazing to happen. And here’s Aroldis Chapman, a pitcher longtime Reds announcer Marty Brennaman calls the best arm he has seen come through in 30 years. Here’s a left-handed pitcher with a 100 mph fastball and a desire to be the best ever. Here’s a real live phenom, out of nowhere, the kind baseball used to have.

    “Well, hey, they did spend $30 million on him,” Art Stewart says. “But I would say they got their money’s worth.”
    When people say that I don’t know what I’m talking about when it comes to sports or writing, I think: Man, you should see me in the rest of my life.
    ---Joe Posnanski

  4. #48
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post
    I must say. The feeling I have about Chapman is the same one I had about Junior: "This doesn't feel right. When is the other shoe going to drop?" Let's hope it doesn't.
    To be honest, there was reason to be skeptical of the Junior trade at the time.

    When Junior signed his first big deal with Seattle in 97, I was upset, knowing that the Reds would never get him in his prime. When they did get him, when he was 30, I hoping the Reds could get one or maybe two years out of him as one of the best players in the game, but expected him to be less than that during most of his contract. What happened was less than what I expected, but I still didn't expect him to be "The Kid" for most of his 10 year contract.

    With Chapman, except for the usual doubts that come with all young pitchers who haven't played in the majors yet, there really is no reason to be skeptical.
    "Imagination is more important than knowledge." -- Albert Einstein

  5. #49
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by lollipopcurve View Post
    Not exactly. He hit it down the leftfield line. One writeup described it as a bloop.
    Former Rangers scout said it was a long double.

  6. #50
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Are we still allowed to post blog posts?

    Chapman’s first outing is first-rate
    Posted by jfay March 8th, 2010, 5:29 pm

    Aroldis Chapman hit at least 100 in his first outing of the spring. One scout mentioned 102 to a reporter. That couldn’t be confirmed.

    But his velocity was what impressed his mentor Tony Fossas the most.

    “To me, 102 is incredible,” Fossas said. “The most important thing today is I saw him nice and relaxed, standing nice and tall. He was finishing up his pitches. His slider was very good again.”

    for more click on the link
    http://cincinnati.com/blogs/reds/
    Last edited by OnBaseMachine; 03-09-2010 at 01:43 AM.

  7. #51
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Go ahead and get excited
    Posted by jfay March 8th, 2010, 7:31 pm

    My friend Dude called about 10 minutes after I came up from the field after talking to Dusty Baker.

    He wanted to express his love and admiration for Aroldis Chapman. He was riding the buzz create as details of Chapman’s spring debut flowed over the web. I usually try to curb his enthusiasm a bit when he gets worked up about his beloved Reds.

    But I didn’t this time.

    for more click on the link
    http://cincinnati.com/blogs/reds/
    Last edited by OnBaseMachine; 03-09-2010 at 01:43 AM.

  8. #52
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by TheNext44 View Post
    With Chapman, except for the usual doubts that come with all young pitchers who haven't played in the majors yet, there really is no reason to be skeptical.

  9. #53
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsManRick View Post
    I must say. The feeling I have about Chapman is the same one I had about Junior: "This doesn't feel right. When is the other shoe going to drop?" Let's hope it doesn't.
    I get the sense that there won't be any other shoe dropping on this young man, and that he has an outstanding present and future ahead of him. I think that he is one of the rare ones that come along every once in awhile.

  10. #54
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier Red View Post
    From Redszone favorite Joe Poz.

    http://joeposnanski.com/JoeBlog/2010...an-cincinnati/
    Player of the Day: Aroldis Chapman, pitcher, Cincinnati.


    GOODYEAR, Az. – We live in a world where there just aren’t many surprises. We know who will win the Academy Awards before they win. We hear about the best college football and basketball players long before they reach college. We hear rumors about the remarkable capabilities of the iPad months before the thing comes out.

    So, no, there just aren’t too many revelations in our lives.

    Maybe that is why the spring training phenom still electrifies us. Here it is, a cool gray day in Arizona. The Cincinnati Reds play the Kansas City Royals. There are a couple thousand people in the stands, maybe. There’s no buzz in the stands. How could there be any buzz? The Reds and Royals playing on a Monday afternoon in a spring training game under gray skies in Arizona?

    And then: Aroldis Chapman steps on the mound. You have probably heard Chapman’s story. He is a 22-year-old left-handed pitcher from Cuba. He tried to defect from Cuba in 2008, was arrested, was given a reprieve and then successfully defected in Amsterdam. He eventually signed with the Cincinnati Reds for more than $30 million, which seems like a startling amount of money for someone who has never pitched in the big leagues.

    And then: You watch Aroldis Chapman pitch.

    “I mean, holy cow,” says longtime Kansas City scout Art Stewart.

    Holy cow. There was a time in baseball when baseball phenoms would just show up, when blazing fast and switch-hitting sluggers would wander out of the Oklahoma mines and 17-year-old pitchers throwing 100 mph would walk off of farms in Iowa. But now – you can follow baseball prospects through high school, through college, through the minor leagues, you can see film on them on the Internet, you can hear scouts talk about them, you can find prospect lists that go all the way to No. 2,000.

    And then here comes Chapman. He’s tall and lean – he looks taller than the 6-foot-4 that is listed in the media guide. He picks up the baseball to warm up, and he throws so easy, like he’s skipping a rock on a lake. The ball popped hard into the glove. The next one popped harder. Kansas City manager Trey Hillman was only half joking when he used that old line about how Chapman’s pitches “sounded good.” They really did sound good.

    But the amazing part was the ease … there was no grunting, no straining, no laboring. You hear that line all the time about athletes who look as if they were born to do something. Chapman struck out David DeJesus on a hard-sweeping slider that seemed to break two feet. He struck out Chris Getz on a 100-mph fastball that sliced the outside corner – anyway Stewart clocked the pitch at 100 mph. Another scout clocked it at 102. Another got it at 98. Chris Getz’s speed approximation: “It was moving.”

    Two batters later Chapman struck out Rick Ankiel on a slider that Ankiel missed by so much he had to be rebooked on a later flight.
    Watching Ankiel trying to hit Chapman was somewhere between comedy and tragedy; you got the sense that if Ankiel faced Chapman 100 times, he would strike out 100 times.

    The Ankiel at-bat was especially poignant because there was a time, not long ago, when Ankiel was that left-handed pitching phenom, the 19-year-old kid who had struck out 416 batters in just 298 minor league innings. No, you never know exactly how the phenom’s story will play out.

    On a day like this, really, anything seems possible.

    “I would say Chapman has the best young left-handed arm I’ve seen since Herb Score,” Art Stewart says, and here he is referring back to one of my heroes, Score, who as a 22 and 23-year-old for the Cleveland Indians led the American League in strikeouts. That was in 1955 and 1956. Score seemed to be on his way to becoming one of the greatest pitchers in baseball history – Sandy Koufax before Sandy Koufax – when he got hit in the eye on a line drive by Gil McDougald.

    But, Art Stewart concedes, even the Herb Score comparison isn’t quite right because Score had a famously violent motion. Chapman makes you think he could throw 115 mph if he was really trying.

    Chapman has already made his goals known: He wants to be the best pitcher in the world. So, sure, he was thoroughly unimpressed by his two-inning, one hit, three strikeout game in Goodyear where he may or may not have hit 100 mph on the radar gun.

    “I wasn’t worried about how hard I threw,” he said. “But I did (throw 100), it’s just one of those things.”

    It’s a funny thing: Every year, there are a couple of teams that are hot preseason choices, and this year’s teams seem to be Seattle and Cincinnati. The Reds have a good and fairly young middle of the lineup – Jay Bruce, Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips – some promising young pitchers like Johnny Cueto and Homer Bailey and a couple of proven veterans like Scott Rolen and Aaron Harang.

    The Reds, like most teams trying to break through after a long dry spell, could use something amazing to happen. And here’s Aroldis Chapman, a pitcher longtime Reds announcer Marty Brennaman calls the best arm he has seen come through in 30 years. Here’s a left-handed pitcher with a 100 mph fastball and a desire to be the best ever. Here’s a real live phenom, out of nowhere, the kind baseball used to have.

    “Well, hey, they did spend $30 million on him,” Art Stewart says. “But I would say they got their money’s worth.”
    Great, great piece by Posnanski. Thanks for posting that hoosier.

  11. #55
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Look, folks, how do you know a player is potentially special? It's the little things. Fay and others have alluded to it, that players stop to watch. Proof? That pic from Jamie Ramsey in the pics thread, and I will try to post it here:



    Just spend a second marveling at the Reds' dugout. Look again. 3rd or 4th inning of pre-season game #3, friends. Not game #3 of the World Series.

    That pic gives me chills as a fan. The good kind of chills.
    Last edited by membengal; 03-09-2010 at 12:31 AM.

  12. #56
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    OBM, on the linking stuff, I have written on a blog for about seven years now, and have long since been comfortable that a link with a highlight of what is in the link is fair use. Even with a blog post, if you are not sure if it's okay, give the link and maybe a paragraph and leave it to the reader to click over for the whole thing.

  13. #57
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    A couple more articles, this one from Yahoo:

    Ankiel, a former pitcher with the same kind of lively arm back in the day, said Chapman throws harder than most lefties and used sliders with two different breaks. He also cuts his fastball — something Getz did not expect — and once followed up a pitch in the upper 90s with an 80-mph change-up.
    http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/blog/big...urn=mlb,226703

    This one is from the Chicago Tribune:

    Strasburg, the Nationals' $15 million first-rounder, has been described by Baseball America as a "once-in-a-generation'' talent. He's a special prospect, no doubt, but better than Chapman?

    I'll believe it when I see it
    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports...2512132.column

  14. #58
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by membengal View Post
    Look, folks, how do you know a player is potentially special? It's the little things. Fay and others have alluded to it, that players stop to watch. Proof? That pic from Jamie Ramsey in the pics thread, and I will try to post it here:



    Just spend a second marveling at the Reds' dugout. Look again. 3rd or 4th inning of pre-season game #3, friends. Not game #3 of the World Series.

    That pic gives me chills as a fan. The good kind of chills.
    Yep. Bronson Arroyo hung around after his start to watch Chapman, according to Mark Sheldon.

    Arroyo normally heads back to the clubhouse right after finishing spring starts but stuck around in the dugout to watch Chapman work from the top step.

    "As uncomfortable as a guy like myself can be at this time of year, for him to be coming from where he's coming from and just getting used to crowds being around and knowing everybody is watching him, for him to throw strikes and not walk too many guys is pretty good," Arroyo said.
    http://cincinnati.reds.mlb.com/news/...=.jsp&c_id=cin

  15. #59
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by icehole3 View Post
    I believe today we see the 100mph heater, thats my prediction
    That, sir, is a good prediction.

    But what's the big deal? Don't we always have a 6-foot-4, 22-year-old lefty in camp that can throw 100 MPH every spring training? No? Oh, alright, never mind. Now I see what all the fuss is about.

  16. #60
    Party like it's 1990 Blitz Dorsey's Avatar
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    Re: More positive reaction on Chapman

    Quote Originally Posted by OnBaseMachine View Post
    Yep. Bronson Arroyo hung around after his start to watch Chapman, according to Mark Sheldon.
    Of course he did. Third from the left.


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