CLEVELAND — Brennan was just trying to hit the ball. What happened after that was not by design.
The rookie Cleveland Guardians outfielder hit a hard grounder that accidentally killed a bird that wandered onto the infield grass during the second inning of Monday night’s 3-0 win over the Chicago White Sox.
With one out and a runner on first base, Brennan, a left-handed hitter, went the other way with a 92.6 mph fastball from Chicago’s Jesse Scholtens. The liner is connected to a small bird that wanders into a dangerous area.
The ball, clocked at 100.1 mph, sent the bird flying, and when Brennan got to first, he put his hands on his helmet and grinned. The umpires called time, allowing a member of the grounds crew to remove the dead bird with a shovel.
After the game, Brennan posted an apology on Twitter.
“I am truly sorry @peta and bird lovers,” Brennan wrote. “A wretched sacrifice.”
This is the second time in a week that a major league player has accidentally killed a bird.
Last week, Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Zac Gallen accidentally hit and killed a bird while warming up in the outfield before a game against the Oakland Athletics. Gallen threw a curveball that hit the bird in mid-flight.
Gallen’s shot is reminiscent of Arizona Hall of Fame pitcher Randy Johnson, who famously struck out a bird that flew in front of the plate during one of his left-handed fastballs in a 2001 spring training game.