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Saving Homers

MLB

Ranking Top 10 Homer Saving Catches

There are too many great homer-savers to list and so any Top 10 will inevitably leave out awesome catches like Kenny Lofton’s. That said, it’s still a pretty good list, I think. And the videos come with it.

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19 Responses to Saving Homers

  1. Greg says:

    Great list. I think there’s room on here somewhere for Willie McGee saving a home run in the bottom of the ninth inning of game 3 of the 1982 World Series. Cardinals were up 6-2, but this would have cut the lead in half with no outs and increased the chances of Molitor and Yount coming to bat once again. Sutter had pitched the last out of the 7th and all of the 8th, giving up a two run homer to Cecil Cooper. McGee saved a second 2-run shot to help close out the game.

  2. EnzoHernandez11 says:

    I never considered how stadium architecture could influence how kids think about baseball. In its early years, San Diego Stadium (later the Murph, later the Q) had a 17-foot wall across the entire outfield. I was a teenager before I even understood that robbing home runs was a thing.

    Also while we’re on the subject of San Diego (or I am, anyway), it was nice to see Adam Jones get a chance to play the hero in his hometown. The O’s don’t get to SD very often.

    • Cuban X Senators says:

      Joe D kicks the dirt again.

    • mark G says:

      Never even came up on a road game?

    • Stephen says:

      Yeah, I grew up watching games in Wrigley Field. You can’t rob someone of a home run in Wrigley!

      I don’t recall seeing robbed homers on TV in other stadiums–wouldn’t be surprised if I had seen them back in the day, but I don’t remember any specifically.

      Back to Wrigley–I remember in one of Mike Trout’s first years in the majors there was a big deal made about him having caught four (I think it was four) long flies that season that would’ve been homers, and how that helped raise his defensive WAR. I wondered at the time whether there was an adjustment for players whose home stadiums, like Wrigley, didn’t allow for stealing away homers. I guess I’m still wondering! Anyone know?

  3. Marc Schneider says:

    I hope those people with the American flags aren’t trying to catch the ball.

    • Richard says:

      Well, if the ball is actually over the wall at the point of the catch, it’s in Fan Territory and the fans are at liberty to attempt to catch the ball (see Alou v. Bartman).

  4. Richard says:

    “Back goes Gionfrfiddo, back, back, back… And he makes a one-handed catch against the bullpen!”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4SrtxVs8uMI

    And if only we had footage of Game 3 of the 1925 World Series….

    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/sports_blog/2011/09/did-sam-rice-reveal-a-world-series-secret-in-a-letter-opened-after-his-death.html

  5. AdamE says:

    “If you want to go outside of Major League Baseball, you have Masato Akamatsu’s absurd Spiderman catch where he actually climbed to the top of the wall, Ken Griffey Jr.’s catch in Little Big League and Bugs Bunny’s catch from the top of the Umpire State Building. But let’s stay in the big leagues.”

    How can Adam Jones’s catch be in the top 10 when it is not a real big league game?

  6. Kev says:

    Another awesome thing about the DeWayne Wise catch is that he came in the game in the 9th as a defensive replacement, and then makes that catch on the leadoff hitter in the 9th. It has to be pretty rare for a defensive replacement to work out so perfectly.

  7. Charlie B says:

    My favorite was always Ivan Calderon, just for the double move of first jumping on the wall and then reaching over the fence.

  8. MCD says:

    There was a catch by Braves infielder Jerry Royster (playing LF) back in the 80’s where he nearly went *entirely* over the wall (I’m thinking he got a foot on top?). I have been looking for the video ever since the advent of the internet, and have so far been unsuccessful in locating it.

  9. SB M says:

    That Otis Nixon catch is especially impressive because he was 63 years old at the time.

    • MCD says:

      It’s hard to believe Otis is only 58 years old *now*. He looked older than that 30 years ago.

    • PhilM says:

      The physicality of major leaguers always impresses and surprises me. Years ago I was at the CES show in Las Vegas — Nixon was toward the end of his playing career, so in his late 30s. On TV he always appeared a little on the slender and scrawny side, but among everyday people he was taller (6’2″), broader in the shoulders, and looked every bit the professional athlete.

      • Marc Schneider says:

        But it’s also interesting how much bigger athletes are (and I guess Americans in general) now compared to 60/70 years ago. Mickey Mantle was considered a big, powerful man at 5’11”, 195 pounds; today, that would be a middle infielder. Of course, it’s most obvious in football.

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