Aledmys Diaz ran all the way into another zip code to make an awesome sliding grab
Steve Jobs. Bill Gates. Elon Musk. American culture and business has long been defined by trail blazers, innovators, those who zigged when others zagged. During Tuesday night's Cubs-Cardinals game, they added another member to their exclusive fraternity: St. Louis shortstop Aledmys Diaz.
Sure, infields have always been defended in roughly the same way. But Diaz cares nothing for convention, and he has an idea that threatens to #disrupt the entire fielding industry: What if you only needed one man to patrol the left side of the infield? You might think that that's simply too much ground to cover, no matter how speedy the fielder. That's probably what Anthony Rizzo thought when he lifted a popup to shallow left field, while the Cards had shifted three infielders on the right side. Here's what Diaz thinks of that:
Even Rizzo knew a great play when he saw one. "It was a really, really nice catch," he told MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch. "It stinks it was on me, but you've got to appreciate a play like that."
To the man himself, however, it was just another day at the office: "I think it's just part of the game and sometimes that's a part of it. I've never practiced that before though."
A play that mind-bending demands some numbers: According to Statcast, Diaz hit a top speed of 20.2 mph and traveled 91.9 feet (!) to get to the ball, before doubling a stunned Kris Bryant off of first to end the inning. A fantastic play, and the best argument yet for the real-life institution of Bugs Bunny baseball.