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A right fielder throwing a runner out at first never gets old

May 30, 2014, 8:55 AM EDT

Jose Bautista nails Billy Butler. This is one of my favorite plays in baseball:

  1. DelawarePhilliesFan - May 30, 2014 at 9:02 AM

    The Royals just fired their hitting coach…..could the “Hustle Coach” be next?

    Actually, no lollygagging going on – juts a perfect confluence of line drive, astro turf hop and slow runner. Great play. proudlycanadian should be pleased

    • bigharold - May 30, 2014 at 10:10 AM

      More like PC is never going to shut up about it.

      Give credit though, that was a great throw.

      • cur'68 - May 30, 2014 at 11:05 AM

        Heck with PC shutting up about it. I got weeks worth of blithering about My Boys pent up here. Hellz Yeah that was some throw! Around my place Bautista is known as “The Precious” just as Gollum called the One Ring. Why? ‘Cuase he is frickin magic, man. The strength and accuracy of his arm frequently holds runners on bases and this time was used to gun down Country Breakfast by a country mile.

        He’s done that before but the whole sequence is reflective of what they are doing differently this season. Some utterly breathtaking defence has been played in the field of late. Gose and Cabrera both had Devon White-esque leaping catches at the wall, E5 has been like a cat over at 1B, and Brett Lawrie has been a sequence of high light reel plays. Just frickin’ amazing. That Bautista did what Bautista does is but a cherry on top the 9 game winning streak. The Yen for Ten was not meant to be because the pitching was once again woeful and this time the defence couldn’t do anything about it. Can’t defend the homer.

        At any rate, they still gotta play some more and this time its JA Happ who is not a guy that instills confidence in a Beaver Fan. Lets hope the bats still got it.

      • bigharold - May 30, 2014 at 3:16 PM

        Oh yeah, .. forgot all about You!

        Crow on!!

  2. 18thstreet - May 30, 2014 at 9:03 AM

    In a one-run game in the 9th! That’s a big play.

    • nbjays - May 30, 2014 at 11:15 AM

      You know it’s an awesome play because I read somewhere that Mitch Williams at MLB Tonight called it a “bush league” play.

      • chinahand11 - May 30, 2014 at 11:20 AM

        It probably happened to Williams in Little League. Love that play!

      • 18thstreet - May 30, 2014 at 11:29 AM

        Wait … what?

      • roundballsquarebox24 - May 30, 2014 at 2:13 PM

        I believe that it was Mitch Williams and Harold Reynolds who didn’t like it when Shane Victorino tried it in the World Series against David Freese, who slid into first and barely beat it out. They were saying that it was a “cheap” out or something like that. Some of the other analysts rightfully disagreed. Victorino actually tried it in the ALCS as well against Jose Iglesias.

  3. largebill - May 30, 2014 at 9:03 AM

    In a way, Butler hit the ball too hard. It got to Bautista too quickly. The video does not show much of Butler coming down the line, but from what it did show it didn’t appear he loafed. He just isn’t that fast even when hustling down the line. Good baseball play. Surprised we don’t see it more often.

    • gigab0t - May 30, 2014 at 9:08 AM

      Fun fact: Butler’s top speed is loafing.

      • blacksables - May 30, 2014 at 9:22 AM

        I guess you’re just jealous because he’s a professional ball player, and all you get to do is complain about him.

      • imnotyourbuddyguy - May 30, 2014 at 9:49 AM

      • chunkala - May 30, 2014 at 10:18 AM

        Yeah he’s jealous because Butler is such an amazing athlete and awesome hitter.
        Please, he’s slightly above average now playing with no pressure for a team that never contends. His career is finished if he ever leaves the terrible AL Central or goes to a perennial contender. Pressure will destroy him.

      • sportsdrenched - May 30, 2014 at 10:36 AM

        Sure, chunk, don’t tell me you wouldn’t switch places with Butler in a split second. If you deny it, you’re lying.

      • lukedunphysscienceproject - May 30, 2014 at 10:53 AM

        Yes, of course, anyone who ever criticizes an athlete or makes a joke about their speed or lack thereof is only doing it because they are jealous of them. What an enlightened position.

      • moogro - May 30, 2014 at 12:22 PM

        Yea, his name is Country Breakfast not Morning Workout.

      • 18thstreet - May 30, 2014 at 12:27 PM

        Doesn’t it go without saying that we’re all somewhat jealous of major leaguers?

    • nothanksimdriving123 - May 30, 2014 at 3:43 PM

      Um, this was fun to watch, but this was in Toronto, on concrete and carpet. I suspect that on real grass the ball would have slowed a bit more and that play would have been much more difficult to make.

  4. steelpenbucs87 - May 30, 2014 at 9:13 AM

    So quick question – is that ruled a single or not? I would assume not because he technically never reached base safely.

    • dondada10 - May 30, 2014 at 9:16 AM

      9-3 on your scorecard.

    • tedwmoore - May 30, 2014 at 9:17 AM

      Yeah, should be a 9-3. Which has to be rare. Is there a way to check other than going through game logs?

      • [citation needed] fka COPO - May 30, 2014 at 9:28 AM

        bref play index?

      • Bryz - May 30, 2014 at 9:50 AM

        MIke Redmond’s last career at-bat ended with a 9-3 putout.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - May 30, 2014 at 3:07 PM

        Tried to find out – could not find, But I found this – in 1880 there was a perfect game that featured a 9-3 put out!

      • gloccamorra - May 30, 2014 at 10:46 PM

        It’s not all that rare. It happened several time to the same player, Smokey Burgess, late in his career. He could hit liners falling out of bed, but he got so fat he waddled down the line, and even center fielders were trying to throw him out at first. He usually drove in a run pinch hitting, and the best defense was getting him at first if there were two out, since the run doesn’t score if the hitter doesn’t reach first base safely.

    • imnotyourbuddyguy - May 30, 2014 at 9:50 AM

      LOL why are people down voting the guys question? He’s just trying to learn how that would get scored

    • scoutsaysweitersisabust - May 30, 2014 at 9:52 AM

      Don’t know why people down-vote a simply question. Questions are good. They are how people learn.

      • kalinedrive - May 30, 2014 at 10:30 AM

        I didn’t hit the thumbs down, but it was a stupid question. How can you give a guy a hit if he didn’t reach first base safely?

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - May 30, 2014 at 10:38 AM

        Someone asked a question. No matter if you feel it is stupid or not, they are asking a question in an attempt to gain a better understanding of this game we all know and love. How is that a bad thing? We can either choose to chastise that person and call them stupid, driving them away, (In short act like the members of PFT), or we can embrace that someone is attempting to LEARN and celebrate that we all share a common interest. Show some class and compassion.

      • 18thstreet - May 30, 2014 at 10:55 AM

        I think we’ve all spent enough time on this site to know that there is a large segment of the readership that does not like to learn new things.

      • cur'68 - May 30, 2014 at 11:07 AM

        Agree. It WAS a good question. You’d think people were allergic to learning or something. Jeez.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - May 30, 2014 at 3:38 PM

        A sincerely asked question is never stupid.

  5. jeffbbf - May 30, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    Don’t underestimate the heads-up, almost instinctual reaction from Encarnacion to break to 1st.

  6. danaking - May 30, 2014 at 9:59 AM

    I grew up in Pittsburgh and got to watch Clemente do this about once a year. The defensive equivalent of a triple, in the way the anticipation level goes up when you realize it might happen. Well done on both Bautista and Encarnacion.

  7. miguelcairo - May 30, 2014 at 10:12 AM

    Bautista is an ass, but was friggin AWESOME.

  8. goawaydog - May 30, 2014 at 10:15 AM

    Since we are asking questions here …. Isn’t a pitcher supposed to come to a complete stop before pitching the ball? That guy is moving his feet and rocking back and forth like an old man on his porch.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - May 30, 2014 at 10:26 AM

      With a runner on base it might be called a balk, but with nobody on it doesn’t matter.

      Some pitchers who consistently do the same move can get away with it without a balk call, where other pitchers might get called for doing the same thing.

      • stoutfiles - May 30, 2014 at 11:41 AM

        It most certainly DOES matter, regardless of if there are runners on. Constant motion is a balk for a reason, it adds deception and makes it harder for not just the runners, but the batter.

        With no runners on, the pitch would be ruled illegal, and the batter would receive a ball.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - May 30, 2014 at 11:47 AM

        Maybe if one reads the rules literally, but pitchers quick pitch and engage in all manner of tomfoolery and I don’t think I have ever seen a pitch called “illegal” for doing so.

        A balk is an attempt to deceive a base runner, so it can’t be called if there is no runner.

      • largebill - May 30, 2014 at 11:58 AM

        It is rare, but illegal pitches do occasionally get called. Usually, the opposing manager points out to the HP ump something they’ve noticed that pitcher doing either prior to the game or between innings.

        A pitcher should be broken of these illegal pitches/bad habits as they are growing up. My son liked to work fast on the mound and a couple times was warned about quick pitching. He learned take a breath.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - May 30, 2014 at 12:10 PM

        I think consistency is key here. I think of CC Sabathia rubbing his hand down his pantleg, or Paul Byrd’s double wind up, or Dempster’s weird glove thing. If a guy does the same thing every time, the umps let it go. I suppose the deception element becomes moot with consistency.

    • chinahand11 - May 30, 2014 at 11:32 AM

      They allow for the pitcher’s “natural motion,” in a balk situation. Look up Luis Tiante. He seemed to balk 2-4 times every pitch, but he always threw the same way. Man was unbelievably crafty, too.

  9. El Bravo - May 30, 2014 at 10:26 AM

    Sweet play.

  10. sportsdrenched - May 30, 2014 at 10:39 AM

    I could be wrong, but I think Frenchy as a Royal was the last RF to get a put out at 1st.

  11. Eric Solomon - May 30, 2014 at 10:40 AM

    Joey Arms!

    (hello…? is this thing on…?)

  12. seeinred87 - May 30, 2014 at 11:03 AM

    9-3 putouts are cool, but 5-7-3 putouts are where it’s at

    • 18thstreet - May 30, 2014 at 11:33 AM

      Sean Casey never played the game the right way.

      Matt Williams would have shot him on his return to the dugout.

    • roundballsquarebox24 - May 30, 2014 at 2:17 PM

      I once saw Bryce Harper try a 7-3 putout from left field. That was awesome!

  13. nbjays - May 30, 2014 at 11:08 AM

    This isn’t the first time Bautista has done this. I’ve seen a couple in the last few years, and it never gets old.

    • cur'68 - May 30, 2014 at 11:18 AM

      No, it never does. He must set that up by prior agreement with Edwin, because if E5 isn’t there to receive it, the throw does not happen.

      • nbjays - May 30, 2014 at 11:26 AM

        I’m sure they talked about it… especially knowing how Billy Butler… er… runs.

      • cur'68 - May 30, 2014 at 11:27 AM

        Country Breakfast doesn’t move fast.

  14. paco53 - May 30, 2014 at 11:30 AM

    It’s not the same as MLB but as a 44-year old softball player, I decide to retire after getting thrown out from RF at 1st base. I did not want to be embarrassed again.

    • nbjays - May 30, 2014 at 11:35 AM

      At least you didn’t get thrown out from LF… now THAT would have been embarrassing.

  15. musketmaniac - May 30, 2014 at 3:44 PM

    Saw Jose Guillen do it in the same park Clemente played in. Special

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