Yadier Molina didn't break a sweat picking off Gregory Polanco at third after a walk
It seemed like it was going to be just your average, run-of-the-mill play. In the fourth inning of the Pirates' 5-2 win over the Cardinals, Gregory Polanco was on third base as Jordy Mercer drew a walk against Mike Leake.
Then, as Mercer removed his shin guard in the batter's box, catcher Yadier Molina caught everyone by surprise by throwing to third:
Molina almost looked casual in his throw, but it was no lollipop -- it was a missile.
Polanco had no idea what was coming:
Third base umpire Chad Whitson originally called Polanco safe, but upon video review, the call was reversed. Instead of needing to deal with runners on the corners and one out, Polanco was gone. Leake quickly induced a grounder to escape the inning unscathed.
The Pirates learned their lesson. "The third-base coach, the first-base coach and Clint [Hurdle], they came to me and said that guy, Molina, does that. Don't try anything on him because he will do it," Polanco said to MLB.com's Adam Berry after the game. "I went, yeah, I know. That's my bad. Everybody does that, but to Molina, that happens. Now I know. You learn from that, move forward, keep my head up."
In all fairness to Polanco, not many catchers in the game can so effortlessly launch a seed down to third quite like Molina:
In the blink of an eye, the rally was snuffed. That's the power of Yadi.