It’s the play you always want guys to make, but, for whatever reason – conservatism, being caught up in the moment, etc. – they just don’t do it.
The intentional drop.
You see the opportunity all the time, especially when a pitcher is trying to sacrifice bunt a runner to second base. He pops it up, and a part of you screams, “LET IT DROP! THROW TO SECOND!” The trade off for doing that, typically, wouldn’t be huge – the pitcher becomes the runner at first rather than the runner on base. So maybe it’s not usually worth that very small risk of throwing the ball away.
But if the pitcher at bat doesn’t run …
You get an easy double play. That’s just heads up baseball by Anthony Rizzo to let the bunt drop once he’d seen that Matt Harvey had no intention of, eh hem, Respecting 90. Not only was it heads up, but Rizzo even went so far as to okey-doke Harvey and the runner by making it look like he would catch the ball – but without touching it so as to steer clear of the intentional drop rule – so that they still couldn’t make it a close play.
Gold star, Mr. Rizzo.
Photo via @MBDChicago.