We haven't hit May yet and it feels like there have been more bizarre plays and moments this season than any full season in recent memory.
The latest comes to us from Tampa Bay Rays centerfielder Desmond Jennings, who on Saturday night did something very, very rare. He completed a double play. All by himself. If you're scoring at home, that would be 8-unassisted.
Here's how it happened.
Eric Sogard delivered a one-out single and was stationed at first base for the Oakland A's in the top half of the third inning. Coco Crisp then hit a soft flyball to center field that Jennings got a great jump on but Sogard misjudged and incorrectly assumed would drop. Sogard continued right on running towards third base when he should have been retreating. All Jennings had to do at that point is make sure he secured the catch. He did, and then he casually strolled in from short center all the way to first base for the double play.
There's a famous acronym TOOTBLAN (thrown out on the bases like a nincompoop) but I think we need something a little stronger for baserunning misadventures like those of Jean Segura on Friday night and now Eric Sogard on Saturday. Granted, Sogard's blunder is fairly typical, but the end result was anything but.
In fact, I noted earlier that an outfielder unassisted double play is a rare occurrence. According to Elias, the last time an 8-unaassisted was recorded was exactly ten years ago when Mike Cameron pulled it off.
The mishap may have influenced the outcome of the game as well. Tampa Bay went on to win 1-0 behind Jeremy Hellickson and Fernando Rodney. One baserunner in a game that tightly contested is important, and free outs on the bases can be very damaging.
- Sports & Recreation
- Desmond Jennings
- Tampa Bay Rays
- Eric Sogard