Craig Kimbrel throws pickoff to first with no one there
Craig Kimbrel throws a pickoff to the ghost at first
Craig Kimbrel rarely makes a mistake. This is a closer who has led the National League in saves every season since 2011. In 2014, Kimbrel recorded 47 saves while only blowing four opportunities. So when Kimbrel blew his first save of the 2015 season during Saturday's game against the D-backs, it's quite possible supernatural forces were at work.
Let's examine the evidence: Kimbrel entered the game in the ninth inning and recorded two quick outs. He walked Jordan Pacheco, the third batter he faced. Then, while pitching to Aaron Hill, Kimbrel threw a pickoff to first to keep Pacheco in check. The only problem: There was no one there to catch his pickoff.
Pacheco advanced to second and the D-backs went on to score a pair of runs, tie the game and send it to extra innings, giving Kimbrel his first blown save of the year.
There are a few things that could have caused this. For example, Wil Myers was playing first base for just the second time this season -- perhaps the situation was ripe for miscommunication. But when you strap on your Ecto goggles, the real reason for the errant pitch reveals itself:
Dastardly specter! It's clear what happened: Kimbrel, who enters a higher state of mind during ninth innings, was in tune to the psychokinetic energy present inside Chase Field, which revealed the ghost to him while keeping it invisible to everyone else. The ghost incessantly taunted Kimbrel into throwing it the ball, as ghosts are wont to do, and in a lapse of focus, Kimbrel obliged. It makes perfect sense.
The Padres won the game anyway, however, thanks to a Justin Upton home run in the 12th inning. They ain't afraid of no ghost.