I have no idea if Yasiel Puig is as dumb as Pedro Strop says he is, but on this we can all agree: Puig routinely does very cool stuff on a baseball field. Tuesday night he made a very bold and cool play in extra innings to give his Reds a walk-off win over the division leading Milwaukee Brewers.
The Reds and Brewers were tied at four runs apiece in the bottom of the 11th inning when Puig slapped a two-out single to center against Brewers reliever Corbin Burnes. Five pitches later, Reds shorstop Jose Iglesias chopped a single up the line in right, where it was gathered by best baseball player in the world Christian Yelich. Here’s how it went down:
Yelich was charged with the error on the play. It looked to me like Eric Thames could’ve helped him out on the throw by, uh, catching it, but either way once it squibbed away Puig didn’t hesitate for even a fraction of a second before dashing home. Puig has always been an incredibly aggressive base-runner, and it was only by tearing ass around the bases and staying alert as he cruised into third that he was even in position to capitalize on the momentary confusion of a loose ball on the infield.
If the desperation shovel to home had nabbed Puig to end the inning, this might very well have gone down as an example of foolish recklessness. Because it worked, we get to enjoy the highlight and hope that it will encourage more of the same. For his part, Puig was happy to describe his heroics in the language of Strop’s criticism: