Feast your eyes on the single weirdest strikeout in MLB history
If there's been a more bizarre swing and miss in Major League history than this one, we'd love to see it. It's so bizarre, in fact, that we want you to experience it first without context. We'll get to the story later, we promise. For now, just enjoy Toronto's Alfredo Griffin swinging through strike three:
Do not adjust your screen. The above actually took place in an actual Major League game between actual Major Leaguers. Yankees reliever Greg Cadaret threw a pitch all the way to the backstop, a good five feet high and wide of the catcher, and Griffin ... swung like he was blindfolded. Which begs the question: Wait, what?
The Blue Jays entered play on Sept. 27, 1992, two games up on the Brewers in the loss column in the AL East. With just six games left to play and a postseason spot on the line -- remember, there were no Wild Card spots back then -- every win was precious. Toronto jumped all over the Yankees that day, scoring multiple runs in each of the first three innings en route to a 9-0 lead. So far, so good.
And then the sky opened up. Rain came down in buckets, with no end in sight. It looked as though play might be called -- and since the game wasn't yet official, the Jays' lead would be wiped away in favor of a doubleheader the next day. What had been a blowout suddenly became a mad dash: Toronto needed to get five full innings in the books before Mother Nature foiled their plans.
Which brings us to Griffin. The shortstop led off the top of the fifth, six outs away from an official ballgame. And with his team already ahead by nine, things like "working the count" or "hitting the ball" were unimportant. He simply had to keep the line moving as quickly as possible. So, with two strikes on him, Griffin was determined to swing at anything. Even a ball over his head:
The kicker? The rain wound up easing off just enough for Toronto and New York to get a full game in: The Jays went on to win easily, 12-2. They held off Milwaukee for the division crown, then went on to win the whole thing -- with Griffin coming on as a defensive replacement in the decisive Game 6.