David Fletcher is running out of things he can't do on a baseball field.
Fletcher has been one of the Angels' best players this season, and he turned heads yet again on Friday night -- this time doubling on a pitch that was nearly thrown over his head in a 5-3 loss to the A’s in Oakland. The 5-foot-9 Fletcher doubled on a 1-2 fastball from A's right-hander Mike Fiers on a pitch that was 4.74 feet off the ground, per Statcast. It was tied for the highest pitch hit for a base hit in the Majors this year.
"Ideally, I'd like to not swing at that pitch," Fletcher said. "But he kind of had me a little rushed up there and I just saw it and kind of reacted. And luckily I was able to get the barrel to it."
It was part of a three-hit game for Fletcher, who is now batting .313/.373/.464 with three homers, eight doubles, 17 runs and nine RBIs in 27 games. He’s also hitting .424 (14-for-33) against the A’s this season.
"I’m not surprised,” Fiers said. “This guy, I don’t know what he did, what he does in the offseason, but it’s working. The guy puts the barrel on the ball. Very tough out. He’s an all-around great baseball player."
Angels manager Joe Maddon, who has praised Fletcher throughout the season, wasn’t surprised by the double either. It’s become clear that Fletcher is one of Maddon’s favorite players, and the infielder has earned everyday playing status.
“It’s usually a short guy who does something like that,” Maddon said of Fletcher’s double. “Guys who are not tall Major Leaguers usually get a lot of high fastballs. But that is like about as high as it gets. That was badminton, that was tennis.”