Don’t Even Think About Scoring From Third When Rick Ankiel Is In Center Field

  • Eric Goldschein

Nationals center fielder Rick Ankiel has an absolute cannon for an arm. If you want proof, just ask Jordan Schafer, who normally would have tagged up and scored from third on this routine fly ball. Instead, like all of us, Schafer was frozen with awe.

As a former pitcher, it’s no surprise Ankiel has a killer arm. But he’s not hitting the plate from the pitcher’s mound (a distance of about 60 feet). He’s hitting the plate from about 300 feet, on the run.

Rarely do you see a runner at third not even attempt to tag up on a fly ball, if it’s deep enough. For almost every other outfielder, the throw home is more of a going-through-the-motions kind of thing, with the ball rarely getting past an infielder. Not here, though — Schafer knows what’s up when Ankiel is prowling the outfield grass.

He must have seen this footage before the game (from @dfreese23):