Season 2 - Episode 10: Throwing Fire

Episode 10: Throwing Fire

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A trainer at a prestigious baseball academy is murdered. Initial suspects include the victim’s wife and his business partner, but Jane thinks the crime may have been motivated by the fierce competition to succeed in the major leagues.

Top baseball trainer Barney Sloop, founder of the prestigious Sloop Academy, is found murdered in his garden within the academy grounds. He has been beaten to death with a baseball bat. The victim’s business partner, Freddy Fitch (Jude Ciccolella, ‘24’), explains that Barney has lived in a trailer on site since he left his wife a year ago after the death of their young son. “With Barney dead, I’m assuming you get the controlling interest in the academy,” says Jane. “What’s that got to do with it?” asks Fitch. “Money – traditionally a very popular motive,” responds Jane. While the consultant succeeds in riling the suspect, his accusations achieve little else. “Maybe he did it, maybe he didn’t,” he concludes.

Back at base, news comes in that Sloop’s wife, Leslie, is the sole beneficiary of her late husband’s $20million life-insurance payout. “Twenty million – that’s a pretty good motive,” Rigsby tells Van Pelt. “For $20million, I’d kill you!” After a great deal of grovelling on Rigsby’s part, he and Van Pelt go to pick up Leslie, only to find she has driven off with a gun, apparently intoxicated on a cocktail of booze and antidepressants. She is tracked down to her son’s grave, where she pulls out the revolver and threatens to commit suicide. Van Pelt manages to talk Leslie down, but things do not look good for the suspect. At the station, she admits to visiting Barney on the night of his death and regularly sleeping with the young players in the academy.

Having remained at the academy, Jane learns from an eyewitness that star player Scotty Sinclair had a fierce argument with Barney on the night of his death. Scotty is brought in for questioning, but his controlling father shields him from any questions.

Freddy Fitch then arrives with a lawyer and brings the interview to an end. “He had an argument with Sloop. Who’s to say Scotty didn’t go back that night and kill the guy?” asks Lisbon when she and Jane are alone. “The kid didn’t do it – he was angry with his dad, not Sloop,” replies Jane. Just then, Van Pelt reports that Leslie’s alibi checks out – an eyewitness saw her arguing with her boyfriend at a cinema. “We’re clearing people we’re supposed to be catching!” says a frustrated Lisbon.

With a number of suspects but only circumstantial evidence linking them to the murder, Lisbon finds herself at a standstill in the investigation. However, Jane has his own ideas and heads back to the academy with Cho. As the players prepare for an exhibition event, Jane walks into the locker room. “Be careful that you sell your talent and not your soul,” he says. “Don’t let other people run your lives – not even your dads.” “What was that about?” asks Cho. “Just confirming a hunch. Give me a minute – I’ll close this thing,” replies Jane, mysteriously. Does the consultant have reason to be confident, or has he allowed his difficult relationship with his own father to cloud his judgement?

Elsewhere this week, Jane is knocked unconscious by a baseball and recalls his youth through a series of flashbacks. He remembers a time when he and his unscrupulous father ran a sideshow at a circus, conning cash out of gullible punters. While his dad clearly had no problem taking people’s money, the young Jane found himself in a moral quandary.



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