Not all dinger thefts are created equal. There are those in which the robber tracks a high fly ball, and is afforded time to plant his feet in front of the wall and measure his leap. These catches often make for the best photo opportunities, as the outfielder gets to use the wall to boost his jump and is able to extend his arm farther beyond the field of play. By my lights, those prettier heists have nothing on what Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain did last night:
The most absurd thing about this catch is just how quickly it happened. That was an honest-to-God line drive that was destined to clear the wall, and Cain had only a split second to break into a full sprint while tracking it off the bat. He was able to measure one, maybe two steps before reaching the wall, but essentially had to go straight from sprinting to leaping, and then had to see the ball into his glove while hitting the fence at high speed. Cain had to do a half-dozen things perfectly in order to make that play, and he did them all in the span of a few seconds. This is why he was one of the most electrifying center fielders in the game.