TORONTO -- Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Trevor Bauer was scheduled to start Game 2 of the American League Championship Series at Progressive Field over the weekend, but a well-documented accident while performing “routine maintenance” on his drone caused him to be scratched 24 hours ahead of first pitch.
Needing 10 stitches to close the wound, Bauer had his start moved back to tonight’s Game 3 matchup at Rogers Centre in Toronto, where a win would give the Indians a commanding 3-0 series lead over the Blue Jays in the ALCS.
“I want to go out and be able to make my start and help the team any way that I can,” Bauer said Sunday. “I was really looking forward to pitching on Saturday, and people came in town and obviously, Game 2, it's an important game.
“All these games are important, so I definitely felt bad. Just one of those things, freak accident you can't really control. (You) try to maintain a positive attitude the whole time. Literally, I was worried that I wouldn't be able to pitch at some point in the series. I got pretty lucky.”
According to Bauer, the “routine maintenance” was something he has “done thousands and thousands of times” before the accident over the weekend.
“For whatever reason, these three propellers didn't spin like they were supposed to and this one spun up at max throttle,” Bauer said while pointing to his drone, which he brought to the press conference. “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 most ironic part of all is the fact that the drone that malfunctioned was one designed by Bauer himself.
“I’m a big nerd, and I like ‘Star Wars’ a lot,” Bauer said. “In 2013, I saw a video of these drones with the LED lights on the back of them racing through the forest and it reminded me of the scene on Endor where they're driving the speeder bikes, and I said, ‘That looks awesome, I've got to learn how to do that.’
“I started teaching myself about it, reading up about it. I was a mechanical engineering major in college. Technology and physics and stuff like that has been a passion of mine my entire life, and this is just a great outlet for me to kind of get away from baseball a little bit and enjoy technology.
“I custom-designed this entire frame. I designed it on a CAD program, 3-D printed some of the parts with my 3-D printer, put it together by myself, assembled it myself, the whole process. Like I said, it's kind of my escape, and I've been doing it for three or four years, two years, three years, actually, and this is the first time anything like this has happened.”
Although the drone accident took him out of the Game 2 start, Bauer says the stitches in his hand are “a non-issue” and is excited about tonight’s start against the Blue Jays.
“I've thrown with it a couple different days,” Bauer said. “It doesn't affect anything as far as my grips. I don't even use my pinky on any of the pitches I throw. It just kind of hangs out over there. I don't anticipate it being an issue at all.”