OK, This Is Just One of the Best Defensive Plays I’ve Ever Seen
I know that headline creates a high bar. For a moment I was tempted to go even higher and remove the “one of” section, but I will hold that open for now while I rack my brain trying to remember a definitely-better play.
C.J. Abrams is the San Diego Padres’ top prospect, and is one of the best prospects in the game. He gets that label mostly – or at least I’ve heard of it mostly – because of his significant offensive potential at such a young age and at a premium defensive position. I suppose what I haven’t heard about, and probably because I wasn’t listening, is that his defense at that premium defensive position (shortstop) is also potentially very good.
Based on this play, at least, it’s unbelievable:
C.J. Abrams DID WHAT?!
The No. 1 @Padres prospect ranges into shallow left field to make a phenomenal defensive play for the @epchihuahuas: pic.twitter.com/oOtvtomF2M
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) June 3, 2022
(Hey, announcer, could you get a little excited? That play was ridiculous! Don’t call it like it’s a routine groundout to shortstop!)
The depth of that ball when Abrams could even get to it. The extreme spin it must’ve had coming off that bounce. The barehanding perfectly. And then, of course, the throw. Falling away, ridiculously far, and a PERFECT STRIKE to get the runner (and save a run). I’m just in such awe of that play.
I guess I could think of an Ozzie Smith or Javy Báez play at shortstop that is on that level or better, but the fact we’re even having that conversation. No, that’s probably not THE BEST PLAY I’ve ever seen, but it’s right up there with the best. It’s just so good.