Though Jason Giambi finished the Cleveland Indians 5-2 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday night as the offensive hero — thanks to his three-run sixth inning homer off Bronson Arroyo — he was also involved in a head-scratching moment that was certainly good for a few laughs. At least for the non-Indians fans out there.
It came in the fourth inning after Giambi had doubled to right center, which was an interesting play in its own right. Nick Swisher, who doubled home a run just one batter earlier, was on second base but had to wait to see if Reds center fielder Shin-Soo Choo could run the ball down. He couldn't, the ball then one-hopped off the wall, but by the time Swisher could rev up the engine for his 180 foot trip from second to home, the Reds were executing a perfect relay and Brandon Phillips nailed him at home by several feet.
To set it all up, that puts the not-so-fleet of foot Giambi at second base with two outs and run producer Carlos Santana at the plate. If you think about it, even with the two out advantage (runner doesn't have to hold up on a liner) that's probably a spot where Santana would need to hit a tweener between the outfielders or a ball down the line to get Giambi home. But regardless of that, the main rule of thumb for Giambi as the baserunner here is to not take an unnecessary chance or make the third out at third base.
In other words, make good and sure the baseball gets far enough away from the catcher before trying to advance. And for goodness sake, don't even think about stealing third. It's not worth it when you're already in scoring position, and besides that there's a left-handed batter at the plate. That leaves a clear view and easy throw for Reds catcher Ryan Hanigan.Read More »from Jason Giambi’s unsuccessful attempt to steal third base provides comic relief (Video)