Josh Harrison #5
Never underestimate the value of a leadoff man in more ways than one. It’s not just batting average, on-base percentage, speed, and other leadership qualities, but apparently sleight of hand and swimming style skills come in handy on the base paths, so it seems. Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman and leadoff man Josh Harrison pulled off the perfect steal (literally) of second base in the bottom of the fifth inning. On a straight steal attempt, Harrison slipped half way, was in no man’s land, then was easily tagged out by San Diego Padres second baseman Ryan Schimpf for an out, except, that’s the way it initially looked. Harrison had the quick instinct to perfectly motion a “swim” move to avoid the tag by Schimpf, and upon a challenge by Pirates manager Clint Hurdle, the call on the field was rightfully overturned, and Harrison was ruled safe. Replay proved he was, in fact, never tagged! Harrison eventually scored, helping the Pirates to a 6-4 win at PNC Park.
QUOTE: “He was going to steal the base, and he didn’t feel he had a good enough jump. So he came up with a plan B,” said Hurdle, on Josh Harrison’s swim-move slide into second base.