When Cincinnati Reds closer Aroldis Chapman entered Tuesday's game against the Arizona Diamondback, he had the opportunity to record his 100th career save of his young career.
He retired the side in order including a strikeout of Didi Gregorious to end the game which extended his consecutive appearances with at least one strikeout to 45 straight games, already a record. His streak dates back to August of 2013. The 26-year old has struck out 67 batters in just over 33 innings of work this season.
"I didn't know it until I heard it when he was coming off the field," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "I had no idea he was accumulating them at that rate. I don't really go back and do a ton of statistical reflection on our players as far as milestones. It was terrific to see and certainly what I hope is the first 100 of many more."
It took Chapman 115 chances to record his 100th career save giving him a save rate of 87 percent. It also makes him the eighth fastest closer to the century mark. Those ahead of Chapman include Eric Gagne (104 chances), John Smoltz, Joakim Soira, Kazuhiro Sasaki, John Axford, Joe Nathan and Craig Kimbrel.
"Some are chosen; some people came to this game to make history," Reds catcher Brayan Pena said of Chapman. "Some people came to this game to leave their prints forever in the game. And what we're watching, I believe, in my humble opinion, is one of those, especially with the streak of appearances with a strikeout."
Chapman has turned up the heat of late. In Monday's loss, Chapman threw a total of 20 pitches, 15 of those topped 100 MPH on the radar including a 104 MPH fastball to Arizona's Paul Goldschmidt. 12 of his 16 pitches on Tuesday hit triple digits as well.
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