Given that he had blown his last two saves, it was not surprising that Aroldis Chapman wanted to blow off a little steam after safely recording one in Cincinnati's 4-3 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday night. What was surprising was the unconventional way the Reds closer chose to do it, completing two somersaults after striking out Martin Maldonado to end the game.
Watch as Chapman turns a professional baseball game into a preschool tumbling class:
It goes without saying that the Brewers weren't big fans of Chapman's acrobatics — "Two somersaults? That's tough," said Milwaukee third baseman Taylor Green — but no one was grinning or laughing in the Reds clubhouse either. Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports reports that Joey Votto and Jay Bruce spoke with Chapman after the game while manager Dusty Baker voiced his opposition after learning about the incident post-tumble.
"I talked to Bronson (Arroyo) on the way in and he said, 'You didn't see that?'" Baker said. "I turned to the guys and said, 'Way to go.' The next thing I looked on the board and saw (Chapman) rolling around. That's something Bryan [Price, Cincinnati's pitching coach] has addressed. I know [Chapman] was happy, especially after the bad week he had last week, but that's something — we don't play like that."
Why Chapman's routine was different from the postgame hip bump or Jose Valverde or Jonathan Papelbon-style closer dance is hard to say. Maybe it has something to do with falling to the ground in front of the just defeated opponent or with its individual nature.
Whatever the case, Chapman crossed a line to the point where his teammates seemed more irked than the opponents across the field. The good news is that maybe the Reds' self-policing will prevent the Brewers from retaliating against someone like Votto or Bruce in Wednesday's game. And to be honest, the Brewers can't take that much offense to this given the way they've carried on with "beast mode" and earthquake explosions at home plate in recent years.
Only one thing's for certain, though: Chapman won't be somersaulting again anytime soon.
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