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Top Pitcher Punches Wall, Will Miss Playoffs

Devin Williams apologizes to his Milwaukee Brewers teammates and fans
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 30, 2021 8:30 AM CDT
Top Pitcher Punches Wall, Will Miss Playoffs
Milwaukee Brewers' Devin Williams is probably out for the playoffs.   (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

(Newser) – The Milwaukee Brewers have lost a top pitcher on the eve of the playoffs to injury—but the twist is that it's a self-inflicted one. Reliever Devin Williams said he had a "few drinks" after the team's playoff-clinching win on Sunday, then punched a wall with his pitching hand after becoming angry and "frustrated" for reasons he didn't specify, reports CNN. The result is a fractured hand that will likely keep him out of the entire playoffs. The team says Williams needs surgery, adding that there's an outside chance he could return should the Brewers reach the World Series, which starts on Oct. 26.

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"I'm pretty upset with myself," Williams told reporters. "There's no one to blame but me. I feel like I've let my team down, our coaching staff, our fans, everyone. I know how important of a role I play on this team and a lot of people count on me." The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says the injury does indeed deliver a "huge hit" to the team's playoff chances. Williams, 27, was last year's National League Rookie of the Year as a set-up reliever—he typically comes in ahead of closer Josh Hader, with the pair "perhaps the best late-game combination in the majors," per ESPN. This year, Williams is 8-2, with an ERA of 2.50 and 87 strikeouts in 54 innings. (Read more Major League Baseball stories.)

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