To be fair, outfielder Ryan Raburn of the Cleveland Indians made a terrific attempt on a fly ball to left hit by Mike Moustakas of the Kansas City Royals in the bottom of the eighth inning Thursday night. What happened after Raburn's dive was cruelly unfair.
Raburn dived in fair territory and, though he couldn't come up with the catch, kept the ball in front of him and appeared to contain Moustakas to a double. But, as you can see from the video above, Raburn's throw was a disaster, spiked into the ground about a body lenghth away on the warning track. It rolled into left field — where nobody else on the Indians was.
Alertly, Moustakas started running again and the Tribe was helpless to do anything about it. Score it a double and an error on Raburn. The brief shot of Indians right-hander Corey Kluber standing there, expressionless, was a perfect addition to the moment's composition. Kluber had taken a perfect game into the seventh, but had gotten no offensive support. And then this happened to break a scoreless tie.
Here's another angle:
From here, it almost appeared that Raburn caught the back of his hand on the fence, but the spike was all him. Instinct told Raburn to rush the ball back into the infield, but throwing toward second base — where Moustakas already had advanced — made no sense. So he tried to stop.
From the Associated Press:
Raburn was miffed about how the play unfolded.
''It was a freak play,'' he said. ''I was trying to hold up. I saw our infielders going toward third, and I tried to hold up. I couldn't and of course the ball rolls halfway to center field.''
It's also reasonable that Indians center fielder Michael Brantley should have come over to back up Raburn on the play, especially given the known treachery of playing the corners at Kauffman Stadium. But Raburn was on his own.
The Indians tied the score with two outs in the ninth but Kansas City came back to win 2-1 in 14 innings.
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