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Red Reporter Classic: The Wagon vs. El Niño Destructor

Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Ed note: This piece originally ran in January 2009 as a FanPost from Verka Serduchka, who still comes around occasionally. Verka was living in the Dominican Republic at the time, and provided this entertaining writeup from the game that he saw. This is why we still call Juan Francisco by the nickname El Niño Destructor to this day, and has been referenced on the site many, many times since. There are pictures in the comments on the original post, so make sure to check those out too. Enjoy.

I have just returned home from my local colmado where I witnessed an interesting moment in the Reds' offseason: The people's wagon, Edinson Vólquez, on the mound against the one and only Niño Destructor, Juan Francisco, during a crucial game in the DR winter league round robin playoffs.  The following is a dramatic interpretation of what may or may not have occured within the minds of V-dub and el Niño during thier encounter in the 4th inning of a 2-1 game with one out and Nelson Cruz on third:

(Note: beer was also consumed during this event)

The Wagon: Pues... looks like Nelson cruz just rocked a hanging breaking ball off the wall to knock in a run.  Debo no throw the ball belt high in the middle of the plate to good hitters so much.

Niño Destructor: Soy el niño destructor.  I eat kids for breakfast.  Roar.

The Wagon: ¡Eat this! (throws a fastball low and away that Francisco swings at and manages to pop up off the third base line.  The third basemen sprints toward the stands in shallow left field and the ball drops just out of his reach)

Niño Destructor: Soy el niño destructor.  You can't throw your fastball by me.  Roar.

The Wagon:  ¿Que lo que Niño Destructor? ¿Te gusta another fastball? (throws a fastball, this time belt high but in on the hands.  Francisco swings, fighting the pitch off and what seems at first to be a harmless liner foul over the dugout sails deep into the outfield landing in the bullpen less than 15 feet outside of the left field foul pole)

Niño Destructor: Soy el niño destructor. ¡Put one of those sobre el plato and we will see what happens!  Roar.

The Wagon: Hmmm.  Vamos a change it up a bit.  If he wants a fastball lets give something different. (throws the classic changeup and Juan is way out and front.  He gets a good swing on it but lines it foul well outside of the first base line).

Niño Destructor: Soy el niño destructor. No puedes fool me with a change up. I am all over that la proxima time. Roar.

The Wagon:  This kid could stand to take a pitch or two. Tal vez if I just throw him garbage I can strike him out sin problema.

Niño Destructor: Soy el niño destructor. ! I like to swing! ! Jim Rice never brought me no pheasant took a walk! Roar.

The Wagon: Vamos a ver, entonces.  (Throws a breaking ball at the dirt that is completely unhittable.  Francisco swings anyway and misses but the ball skirts under the catcher's glove)

Niño Destructor: ¡Coño! Soy el niño destructor and now I have to try and run really rapido to first base.  Maybe I shouldn't eat so many chimis en la calle.  Roar. (The ball rebounds neatly off the backstop and the catcher scoops and fires to first getting Juan easily)

The Wagon: ¿You dare joder con the wagon of the people? ¿Haven't you seen Slyde's graphs of my stuff? .000 porciento de los batters hit that pitch last year.  Ya tú sabes.

Niño Destructor: Soy el niño destructor.  You haven't seen the last of me. ¡Nos vemos en Sarasota en Febrero! Roar.