This will go mostly without much notice or discussion because there was no injury and because it was in the minor leagues, but this is completely unacceptable.
In the 8th inning of the Tennessee Smokies game last night, with the Smokies hosting the Cincinnati Reds’ Double-A affiliate, Cole Roederer was up to bat with a couple runners on. At one point, the Cubs outfield prospect asked for time – late, yes, but granted by the umpire. That’s when reliever Ricky Karcher did this:
Maybe he would claim wildness or whatever by being thrown off in the moment, but there is absolutely nothing in that video that makes it look like a mistake. It looks instead like a guy who got pissed off in the moment about a freaking timeout, and then threw a fastball right at the batter’s face. I could be wrong. But I see what I see. Karcher, by the way, has not hit a batter yet this season in 24.0 innings pitched.
If Roederer hadn’t already been walking away, who knows what would have happened? It is enraging how dangerous that was, and it needed called out. Thanks to Brad for catching it.
At least Roederer, for his part, got the best revenge a couple pitches later with an RBI single: