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Padres use steal of home in ninth to overtake Dodgers

Jul 15, 2012, 12:53 AM EDT

Dodgers Padres

The Padres came back to beat the Dodgers on a crazy play Saturday, tying the game on a steal of home with two outs in the top of the ninth and scoring the go-ahead run on the same sequence.

The Padres had runners on the corners with no outs before Kenley Jansen got a strikeout and a pop out in a 6-5 game. Will Venable had stolen second in the meantime, putting two men in scoring position for Alexi Amarista. During Amarista’s at-bat, Jansen was kicking at the mound and not really paying attention to the runner, allowing Everth Cabrera to take off from third. Jansen noticed in time to potentially make a play, but the throw sailed over the head of catcher A.J. Ellis, who was also very late to react.

Here’s the link to the video.

The third man caught napping in the sequence was home plate umpire Greg Gibson. He initially called Cabrera out at home, even though Ellis never so much as touched the ball, which was  sitting by the backstop. Gibson changed his call, and Ellis, again apparently still trying to figure out what was going on, finally gathered the ball too late to prevent Venable from scoring the go-ahead run. It didn’t help that Jansen was slow to cover the plate.

In the end, it was simply a colossal failure from the Dodgers’ battery, though ansen deserves most of the blame. Give credit to Cabrera, who was in the game as a pinch-runner. He’s now 16-for-16 stealing bases this year. After Amarista was retired on a groundout, Huston Street went on to pitch a scoreless bottom of the ninth, giving the Padres a 7-6 victory.

  1. Diana - Jul 15, 2012 at 12:57 AM

    I would love to see the video of this debacle. Hopefully something will be posted later.

    • Matthew Pouliot - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:07 AM

      I added the link to the video now.

  2. icanspeel - Jul 15, 2012 at 12:59 AM

    Now that is literally stealing a win from the Dodgers. Amazing base running though.

    • andrewproughcfe - Jul 15, 2012 at 12:06 PM

      That’s not “Amazing base running” – that’s what these guys should all be doing. Make something happen – don’t stand around and wait for it to happen.

      The average major league player now makes roughly $20K per 9 innings, whether they sit on the bench or play the whole game. That’s about as much for one game as Willie Mays made in his first 3 seasons combined. For that kind of money, these guys should be trying to make something happen, playing aggressively. Instead, most MLB players are going to look a lot like Jansen–wandering around waiting for something to happen–even in the 9th inning.

      • icanspeel - Jul 15, 2012 at 12:58 PM

        It is amazing base running because not everyone has the speed to make things happen. It’s also very risky so even the Padres coaches didn’t really want him doing it, but there was a slight miscommunication. It’s not that most players don’t want to do stuff like that, most aren’t allowed too.

  3. mack10da - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:04 AM

    that’s not what the dodgers needed after their recent woes!!

  4. Brian Murphy - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:05 AM

    If you were at that game, you probably didn’t see what happened because you probably weren’t paying attention. Like Kenley. Just a stunning, “wow” baseball moment.

    • Matthew Pouliot - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:09 AM

      I was watching the Dodgers feed live, but if you watch the Padres feed, which I linked to here, they’re crowdshooting when the play starts and the guy in the crowd starts to point it out as the camera cuts away. Thought that was pretty neat.

    • bigleagues - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:22 AM

      Well, we know one topic that will addressed this morning/afternoon in virtually every clubhouse in baseball.

      Two days in a row, Major League Baseball players completely asleep on one of the fundamental fundamentals of the game . . . always know what the runner(s) is/are doing when the ball is live.

      There really are no excuses. None.

  5. Diana - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:10 AM

    Well, here it is …

  6. Diana - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:11 AM

    Oh sorry Matt – didn’t see your note ’til after I posted the link.

  7. randygnyc - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:17 AM

    Lol at myself. I’ve been watching nearly 12 hours of continuos baseball today, starting with the Yankee game at noon. By the time the 8th inning finished, I was burnt out and turned it off and missed. I’ll have too look at mlbtv for the highlights. Tough loss.

  8. 4d3fect - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:27 AM

    I remember having to drill into our Little League pitchers “never turn your back on the runner”

    Embarrassing and costly gaffe for the bums. Especially since the Giants just won in extras.

  9. O.Handwasher - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:54 AM

    Ellis should’ve just walked off the field DeWayne Wise style. The ump’s first clue that he didn’t have the ball was when he chased after it.

  10. kiwannabee - Jul 15, 2012 at 2:20 AM

    This was the highlight of the Padres’ entire SEASON.

    For a true Padres fan, anything that makes the Dodgers look bad is a moment of glory.

  11. curtown - Jul 15, 2012 at 3:09 AM

    I love that SD literally stole the win! die hard Padres fan and proud of it

  12. bigdawg8 - Jul 15, 2012 at 4:14 AM

    Whats up with all the typos? Is the pitcher’s name Jensen? Jansen? Ansen? Reading this was about as confusing as watching the sequence.

  13. paperlions - Jul 15, 2012 at 6:09 AM

    I’m going with this being a Bryce Harper effect. If Harper doesn’t steal 3rd Friday when the Marlins are napping, does it even occur to Cabrera to try it here?

    • hoopmatch - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:21 AM

      Interesting observation, paperlions. You may be right. And that would make Harper good for the game in ways we hadn’t thought of.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jul 15, 2012 at 11:09 AM


        Cabrera deserves all the credit. Kenley and AJ were napping. Bryce was someplace talking to himself in a mirror.

      • paperlions - Jul 15, 2012 at 11:31 AM

        Yeah, because every time you do something for the first time, it was completely your idea and not an imitation of something you saw someone else do. /sarcasm

        Most people rarely have new ideas or experiment with something new, they simply imitate and adapt the things they see other people do…it is how people learn, and it is why written communication was so important to the creation of civilizations…complex ideas could be preserved and communicated through generations without loss of information.

        The day after Harper stole 3rd, the odds that Cabrera’s thinking was completely uninfluenced by a that play while he was on 3rd is nearly 0%.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:16 PM

        I’m sure Evereth Cabrera, 3 year major league ballplayer, takes his cues from a 19-year-old rookies all the time.

        Of course, West Coast baseball is proven to be directly influenced by East Coast baseball. Because, see, things happen there first.

        I may not always agree with you, Paper, but I’m really surprised by this line of thinking.

        Some food for thought: Cabrera has been in pro ball since 2006, Kenley since 2009. Cabrera’s been starting in the pros since 2006. Kenley just started his job as the closer this year. Ergo, Evereth schooled Kenley, and AJ wasn’t ready for it.

        But, yeah, go Bryce! Harper’s Da Man!!

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jul 15, 2012 at 1:18 PM

        * Meant that Cabrera’s been starting in MLB since 2009.

        Pro ball includes Rookie League since they are getting paid.

  14. jolt12 - Jul 15, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    I’m totally unfamiliar with the broadcasters (I’m east coast). Are they well known to be this bad? It doesn’t take but a half second to recognize that obviously the ump totally did not see the ball—there’s no mystery. He simply did not see it. They were going on and on as if they couldn’t understand how he called the dude out. Yo guys–would you like me to explain it to you? He didn’t see the ball. Get it? (Of course it was a hugely embarrassing moment for the ump but it happens. He’ll live.)

    • micker716 - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:05 AM

      Dick Enberg and Vin Scully? Yeah, just a couple of kids trying to break into the business.

      • jolt12 - Jul 15, 2012 at 12:40 PM

        Got me. I’ll own it. I’m embarrassed.
        But the reality is, I’m finally coming around (after 50 years of watching baseball) to admitting that I am bored with most tv announcers and their quirks, habits, cliches and need to describe the obvious. It’s hard to turn the sound off—I want the sounds of the game—but there are so few voices that don’t get me talking back to the screen anymore. But I definitely honor the pioneers. I really stepped in it here. To abuse Captain McCluskey, “I guess I’m getting too old for my job. Too grouchy.”

    • paperlions - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:10 AM

      Yeah, um….if you are the umpire, knowing where the ball is….that’s kind of key. Not knowing where it is = poor umpiring.

      • bigleagues - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:14 AM

        paperlions, you stole my Mr. Obvious statement right out from under me!

        Just remember we don’t want to alienate and embarrass the newer baseball fans.

  15. buffalomafia - Jul 15, 2012 at 9:20 AM

    Now thats baseball

  16. congocash - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:06 AM

    We had the game in the bag all along….

  17. bigleagues - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:11 AM

    Reason #837 why I shouldn’t shut down before games are finished for the day.

    That is a play that I thought only to be possible in backyard baseball. PHE-NOM-MEN-OL!

    The worst part of that play for the Home Plate Ump is that even the Dodger’s 167-year-old Vin Scully knew that Cabrera was safe.

    And then for Venable to score from 2nd is just so . . . I mean, what is the word? Unacceptable seems so inadequate.

    • hoopmatch - Jul 15, 2012 at 10:23 AM

      Actually, I think Vin hasn’t hit 100 yet.

      • aceshigh11 - Jul 15, 2012 at 11:19 AM

        Thanks for the clarification, Stephen Hawking.

  18. ch0psuey - Jul 15, 2012 at 12:10 PM

    I would like to think Dave Roberts ( The pads 1b coach ) had a small role in this. I believe Venable swiped home last year also on a similiar play. *edit* not a steal but sort of the same concept:

    • micker716 - Jul 15, 2012 at 2:17 PM

      Not possible. Apparently stealing home didn’t exist until Bryce Harper did it this season.

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