In the ninth inning of the Indians' 8-1 loss to the Tigers on Sunday, Lindor pulled a pitch from Detroit reliever Joakim Soria deep into right field for what looked like a sure double. Lindor sprinted hard up the first-base line and lost his footing when he stepped on the bag, causing him to flop to the dirt before retreating for a single.
"I didn't feel my legs," Lindor said with a laugh.
At the tail end of a tough loss in Detroit -- one that sealed a series defeat against the rival Tigers -- it was a moment that brought some levity to the visitors' dugout.
"I thought it was a good hit," Indians center fielder Michael Bourn said with a grin. "Well, I thought it was a good hit until you-know-what happened. That gave us a good laugh, even though we lost. Hey, we've all done something stupid. I know I have."
The single marked the first big league hit for the 21-year-old Lindor, who was called up from Triple-A Columbus prior to the game. Rather than immediately throwing the switch-hitting shortstop into the fire, Indians manager Terry Francona opted to leave him on the bench for the first six innings to soak everything in and hopefully calm his nerves.
The rookie jitters were present in the seventh, when Lindor pinch-hit for David Murphy and struck out on four pitches against Tigers lefty Blaine Hardy.
"I was excited. The first at-bat went quick," said Lindor, who is ranked by MLB.com as the No. 3 prospect in baseball. "The second at-bat, I was trying to slow myself down a little bit."
Lindor did that in the batter's box, but he could not slow himself down as he tried to round first.
After stumbling and shifting back to his feet, Lindor began pointing at Detroit first baseman Miguel Cabrera, jokingly saying the Tigers slugger was to blame for the fall.
"It wasn't him," Lindor said. "I just had to pick on somebody, and he was right there."
All kidding aside, Francona was thrilled to see Lindor collect his first hit.
"I was going to say first double," the manager said with a smirk. "That was a good swing. That was good. It's a tough day for us, but you try to always [find] something [positive]. In this case, getting him in there and getting him a couple at-bats should help his nerves moving forward."