Thursday, October 28, 2010

Mizzou in the Majors: Ian vs. the Giants

Long-time readers of SimmonsField.com may remember that one of the annual recognitions we award in the post-season Tip of the Cap Awards is the Base Cadet award, given to the Tiger base runner who exhibits the most creativity (and sometimes the most fool-hardy daring) on the base paths. I always soften the blow for the current recipient by pointing out that the very first Base Cadet moniker was given in 2003 to none other than Ian Kinsler, who distinguished himself with a few lapses of judgement and attention on the basepaths that year. Occasionally, the old base cadet still rears his dizzy head at unfortunate moments:

Aubrey Huff nonchalantly catches dejected Ian Kinsler committing A FAIL (SBNation.com)
Okay, so what exactly happened here? Kinsler hit a tough infield hopper off Sergio Romo to the second baseman Freddy Sanchez. Sanchez scooped it out of the infield, but threw it wide of the bag that forced Aubrey Huff to dive for the ball. Kinsler, assuming the ball went wide of Huff, touched first base easily and started running toward second.

But the ball didn’t go wide of Huff, who managed to snag it and then leisurely strolled back to tag the sad-looking Kinsler. You can view the play here, over and over again.

Kinsler's aggressiveness costly on basepaths (mlb.com)
Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler knows just one way to pull his team out of a hole -- by being aggressive.

But sometimes the one way is the wrong way. An ill-fated decision on the bases led to a key out in the eighth inning of the Rangers' 11-7 loss to the Giants in Game 1 of the World Series at AT&T Park on Wednesday.
. . .
"I didn't see much," Kinsler said. "I saw the throw was going to be wide. I didn't get a full look at it and I heard the crowd react, so I figured it went by [Huff]. I took one step and I saw that he came up with it, and I was out."

It's not the first time Kinsler's zeal on the bases has led to a bad play at a key time.

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