The great thing about baseball is you never know where the next great play will come from or who will make it.
With that in mind, we head out west to the Pacific Coast League where outfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis is attempting to get back to the big leagues with the Las Vegas 51s — the Triple-A affiliate of the New York Mets. A .190 batting average through ten games probably won't put him on the fast track, but the sensational play he made to rob Sacramento River Cats catcher Steven Vogt of a home run over the weekend will surely catch a few eyes.
It's not just the fact that Nieuwenhuis nearly flipped over the short fence protecting the visiting bullpen at Raley Field in order to bring the ball back, if you watch the entire highlight and just focus on his path to the baseball, you'll be amazed at how much ground he manages to cover in a short time.
Simply a terrific catch. But if we go back in the time machine to just about this time last season, we'll recall that Nieuwenhuis is no stranger to making great catches at the wall. Remember the "Velcro" play at Citi Field? That, too, was Kirk Nieuwenhuis. And though he may be as graceful as Spiderman, if he keeps this up that may be the nickname he ends up with.
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- Kirk Nieuwenhuis