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Better Catch - Barehanded Comebacker, Or Over Your Head Basket Willy Mays Style?


I’m a huge fan of barehanded plays in baseball. When a 3rd baseman is charging down the line and picks it up and throws it all in one motion to first it makes it move in the pants. Comebackers where the pitcher barely has time to blink before nabbing the ball with his pitching hand are awesome as well. Just that pure instinct to not only avoid getting drilled in the head but to also catch it is rare but always great.

On the other hand, this catch last night by Juan Lagares was incredible as well:

On plays like that you’re tracking the ball, tracking the ball, and then put your glove in a position to make the catch and hope to god you tracked it correctly. You have about a half second where you lose sight of it and then I can’t imagine the sweet feeling of it falling into the mitt.

Both catches are fantastic in their own right. I’m a big comebacker guy because I love the instincts and reflexes needed to make that catch. The Willy Mays style catch combines speed, coordination, and eye-hand coordination all mixed into one. But if I had to choose one, I think the comebacker has a higher degree of luck compared to skill than the Willy Mays catch, so I give the catch of the night to Lagares.