Minor League Beanball Trial Goes To Court (Video)

Julio Castillo is certainly a dangerous man. Whether intentionally and feloniously so is, it seems, a matter for the courts.

Dragons Brawl
(Aw, they’re just horsin’ around. Let ‘em play, ump! Hey, why’s that fan bleeding from the ear?)

Castillo is facing trial in Dayton, Ohio, for his role in a bench-clearing brawl between his former team, the Peoria Chiefs, and the hometown Dragons. Wait, that doesn’t adequately explain the situation. He threw a ball that cracked an unsuspecting fan in the skull. Video is below, and it’s stunning.

The video’s rather short duration is deceptive; the brawl itself actually lasted about 10 minutes, according to an ASSOCIATED PRESS report. It appears to be a somewhat innocuous war of words between opposing coaches until Castillo shows up out of nowhere and comes out firing, setting off the pandemonium.

As the DAYTON DAILY NEWS reports, the case is finally going to trial a year after the incident itself, and there’s one thing both sides can agree on - Castillo is a walking injury machine (emphasis ours, as always):

The man who was struck by former Peoria Chiefs baseball pitcher Julio Castillo’s throw into the stands at Fifth Third Field suffered a concussion and had marks from the ball’s stitching in his scalp, an assistant Montgomery County prosecutor said Tuesday, July 21.

“This defendant, Julio Castillo, made a decision and he acted on that decision,” assistant county prosecutor Jon Marshall told Common Pleas Judge Connie Price. “He decided that he was going to hurt someone, anyone.”

[…] [Defense attorney Dennis] Lieberman … denied that Castillo was angry, but instead was frustrated with his own performance in the game, during which he beaned two batters and broke the leg of his team’s second baseman during a botched play.

“Julio was perhaps frustrated, but he wasn’t angry with the Dragons,” Lieberman said.

Thank god he got taken into custody instead of driving home from the game; he’d have probably run a bus full of nuns off a cliff.

If this seems like a silly war of semantics over two words with imprecise definitions (“He was angry!” “No, he was frustrated!” “Angry!” “Frustrated!” “Duck season!” “Wabbit season!”), the requirements to prove felonious assault require anger and intent to injure. We’re not just wasting time on fighting for the sake of fighting.

But knowing his intent as agreed upon by both sides, watching the video again reveals a priceless moment where Castillo has just uncorked his Flying Sphere of Pain and Trauma, only to watch it sail out of control and into the stands. For one moment before a Dragon (the baseball player, not the mythical beast) leaps atop Castillo to rain blows down upon him, you see a fleeting moment of regret on Castillo’s face, a “that’s not really what I had in mind.” Except, y’know, in Spanish.

Whether he was angry when the beanball left his hand, somehow, is yet to be determined. Whether he still was when the ball nailed victim Chris McCarthy in the dome, however, seems a little less likely.