Jesse Chavez preserves structural integrity of skull by snagging wicked liner (video)
Oakland Athletics pitcher Jesse Chavez may have in fact saved his damn life thanks to some quick, catlike reflexes when a screaming line drive off the bat of Seattle Mariners right fielders Michael Saunders during the 4th inning of Tuesday’s game.
The rocketed line drive was bearing down on Chavez’s face when he deftly stuck his glove up just in time to prevent the ball from inflicting egregious damage upon his face.
The incredibly loud snap of Chavez’s glove upon the ball’s impact makes it especially disturbing. The only thing more disturbing would have been the sound of the ball striking the pitcher’s face. Yamma hamma.
The force of fielding the ball just before it struck him caused Chavez to fall to the ground instantly. Whew. Lucky man.
Chavez managed to stay in the game and given the terrifying circumstances of what just happened to him, pitched somewhat admirably. After giving up three runs in the first inning, Chavez lasted 5.2 innings, scattering seven hits and four earned runs in Oakland’s 8-3 loss.
Chavez appeared to be taking just how close he came to being maimed all in stride after the game, downplaying the potential for peril when a bang-bang play like this occurs.
“All reflex,” Chavez said via SFGate.com. “As soon as I let it go, I saw him make contact and put my glove up. … I’m standing here.”
Again, lucky man.
Geez, between this play and how a fan almost had his face caved in during the Rays-Orioles game, Tuesday featured two too many close calls.