Jeff Baker leads with his knees to make great play

David Brown
Big League Stew

Jeff Baker of the Texas Rangers made one of the best diving-catch/throws you could want to see an outfielder make Tuesday night. What a genius move, giving himself maximum springiness by using both knees on the fence!

But sometimes, when you sacrifice your body to make a play, you make a real physical sacrifice. Baker injured both of his knees diving legs-first into the fence at Angel Stadium to rob Josh Hamilton of extra bases. Baker, who is not an outfielder by trade, was forced to leave the game in the first inning, but later said he does not expect to miss any more time. Phew.

Still, he learned a valuable lesson: Never lead with your knees, no matter how cool it looks.

The play is viewed best in animation form, courtesy of a GIF by Erik Malinowski. The best part, other than the old-timey silent film nature of the animation, is the throw. He just pops right up and gets the ball back into the infield to prevent the Angels from advancing on the bases.

Speaking of selections that Jeff Baker makes, here's the lastest from the George Baker Selection:

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