The home run ball might be king in baseball, but a good defensive play never gets old. Some of the more exciting defensive plays happen in the outfield with would-be home run balls getting brought back into the park by Gold-Glove caliber players.
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Here are five of the best catches of the MLB season so far.
1. Ramon Laureano saves a no-hitter by robbing Joey Votto Mike Fiers has Laureano to thank for keeping his no-hitter intact. Had it not been for the outfielder’s heroic grab, the Oakland A’s pitcher might have lost the no-hitter and the game with the game still scoreless when Votto hit this bomb deep to center field in the top of the sixth inning. Laureano is no stranger to making plays in the outfield, but this catch will go down as on one of his best ever.
2. Kevin Pillar does his best Spider Man impression Pillar had plenty of highlight-reel catches during his tenure with the Toronto Blue Jays, and that hasn’t changed since joining the San Francisco Giants. Nick Senzel of the Cincinnati Reds thought he had hit the first home run of his MLB career when this ball left his bat in the bottom of the third inning, but Pillar had other plans.
3. Lorenzo Cain makes game-saving catch on Opening Day Jose Martinez would have liked nothing more than to spoil Opening Day at Miller Park by hitting a home run to help the St. Louis Cardinals pull even with the rival-Brewers in the bottom of the ninth inning, and he almost did if it wasn’t for Cain’s game-saving catch that got everyone in the stadium on their feet. Cain was pumped after making the catch, and Milwaukee pitcher Josh Hader could not have looked more relieved to see his teammate keep the ball in the park.
4. Jackie Bradley Jr. denies Trey Mancini of a walk-off HR in the 11th inning Despite the game going into extra innings, Bradley showed no signs of fatigue when he robbed Mancini of a potential walk-off home run in the 11th inning. This ball should have gone out, but the Red Sox outfielder showed tremendous reach to climb the wall and get the full extension of his glove hand. Mancini described it as “one of the worst feelings you can describe,” but the Orioles slugger tipped his cap to Bradley, calling it an “amazing catch.”
5. Josh Reddick makes game-saving catch in Lone Star series Last but not least on the list of the best catches of the MLB season so far is Reddick’s leaping grab to help the Astros beat the Rangers in a Texas showdown. By the looks of it, Hunter Pence was going to put the Rangers up by one with a three-run home run in the top of the ninth inning, but Reddick timed his jump perfectly to make this catch.