Nasty drone-inflicted laceration takes pitcher out of playoff game
Baseball has been played for more than 150 years, but Monday night marked a historic milestone — the first time a professional player has had to leave the game due to a drone injury.
Trevor Bauer, a self-described drone fanatic and one of the top pitchers for the Cleveland Indians, had to leave Game 3 of the American League Division Series after just two outs and 21 pitches into the first inning, after the pinkie finger on his pitching hand started bleeding profusely.
On Sunday, Bauer brought the offending drone to a news conference in Toronto, where he explained what happened.
“So I plugged it in, like I’ve done thousands and thousands of times, and for whatever reason it was sitting like this,” Bauer said. “I was plugging the battery in and my finger happened to be right here, and for whatever reason these three propellers didn’t spin like they were supposed to and this one spun up at max throttle. It never happened to me before. I have no idea why it happened. And my finger just happened to be in the way of the prop and it cut me.”
The laceration was deep enough that Bauer had to take a cab to the emergency room.
Bauer said he first got into drones in 2013, after seeing a drone video that reminded him of the Endor speeder-bike chase scene from “Return of the Jedi.” “I said, ‘That looks awesome, I’ve got to learn how to do that,’” he said Sunday. Bauer, needless to say, is also a huge “Star Wars” fan.
In 2015, Major League Baseball ordered Bauer to ground his quadcopter drone, which he had been flying over the team’s spring training facility in Arizona in violation of the league rules against remote-controlled flights over stadiums.