Nelson Cruz deliberately tries to be caught stealing, steals his first base of the season anyway
Nelson Cruz tries to be caught stealing, steals base
Few players have started the 2015 season as hot as Nelson Cruz. Through three weeks, the Mariners' right fielder leads MLB in home runs (9) and RBIs (20), and the American League in slugging percentage (.718) and total bases (51). But while Cruz has been nothing short of a travel agent for baseballs, one thing eluded him: a stolen base.
So, during Sunday's game against the Twins, Cruz did what anyone in search of a swipe would do: He tried, deliberately, to be caught stealing.
It worked. Or, actually it didn't work, according to Cruz's actual goal. But he did successfully reach second base, despite finding himself in a potential rundown.
It was a savvy move: With a runner on third, Cruz hoped that his base-stealing attempt would draw a throw from Twins catcher Chris Herrmann, preoccupying the Twins with a rundown and allowing Justin Ruggiano to score the go-ahead run. The Twins didn't take the bait, though, and Cruz was allowed to walk to second, recording his first stolen base of the season.
It probably wasn't Cruz's preferred outcome, but even when things don't go Nelson Cruz's way, they kind of go his way.