I was flipping through a recent issue of ESPN The Magazine when I came across the following nugget. It’s not online, so I can’t link it; I’ll just order you to go subscribe to the magazine as I copy the text. Anyway, I thought it was interesting:
The headline is “Catching Heat: Reds C’s Ryan Hanigan, Ramon Hernandez and Corky Miller parse rookie flamethrower Aroldis Chapman.”
HANIGAN: I caught his debut. As has become typical, there were oohs and aahs from hitters and umps.
MILLER: Catching him is pretty easy; it’s hitting him that’s hard. Hitters are more on edge and quicker to jump out of the box. Lefties complain of the unfairness of his velocity.
HANIGAN: Still, with the high speed and fast delivery, there’s less time for me to react. To make up for it, I set up differently. I move to the left of the plate, so I’m clear in case he throws an errant ball.
HERNANDEZ: I sit farther back to get an extra second to see the ball. When a fastball moves at 100-plus mph, a wayward pitch gets away in a hurry.
MILLER: If a pitcher is in control, life is simple. That’s true at 86 or 103 mph. It’s hard only when he’s wild.
HANIGAN: Anyway, when it comes down to it, we’re expected to catch the ball. Yes, it’s thrown harder. But I’m a pro.