Dang! What a catch!
With the Oakland Athletics fighting to avoid elimination at the hands -- and arms and bats -- of the Detroit Tigers, Coco Crisp made a leaping catch at the wall to rob Prince Fielder of a likely home run in the second inning. Leading off the top of the second inning, Fiedler gave the fourth pitch he saw from Brett Anderson a ride that seemed likely to result in a four-base hit. Ranging into right-center field, Crisp leapt from the warning track and let his momentum carry him toward the wall. As he crashed into the wall, Crisp reached up with his left hand and snagged the ball seemingly just before it could drop over.
Crisp's grab preserved the slim 1-0 lead -- courtesy of a run he scored -- that the A's had staked Anderson to in the first and provided a bit of redemption for a costly error when attempting a basket catch late in Game 2. After that two-run gaffe, the A's outfielder let out some frustration on Twitter admitting that he has to "make that dang play!!!"
This time around, he did. The A's would add a second run on a homer by Seth Smith and Anderson and the A's pitchers would shutdown the Tigers lineup en route to a series-extending 2-0 win.
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"It was a confidence booster. Obviously, the dropped fly ball was huge for us and that can kind of wear and tear on you a little bit. Obviously, I was replaying it in my mind and I wish I would have caught it," Crisp told Jaime Maggio of TBS on the field after the game. "Things could have been different for us that previous game. But to be able to come out and make a catch like that, that was big for myself and for the team as well."
Judging from Crisp's emotional reaction, he may have still been thinking about his failed catch in the back of his mind. After crashing into the wall and onto the dirt, Crisp jumped to his feet to show the ball and celebrated the highlight grab.
After that stellar grab, Crisp and the A's other outfielders were relegated to spectator status for the remainder of Anderson's outing. According to ESPN Stats & Info, Crisp Fielder's pilfered blast was the only fly ball out Anderson recorded in his six innings pitched.
"It was unbelievable. Coco robbing the homer kind of set the tone," Anderson told Maggio after the game. "We scored a run early [to] kind of ease me into the game a little bit. You can't say enough about the defense."
The A's defense came through again in the seventh after Anderson had ceded the mound to reliever Ryan Cook. Once again, Fielder had a hit snatched from him. This time it was Yoenis Cespedes who made a diving catch in left field to take away at least a single.
These teams will be back in action on Wednesday for Game 4 of the best-of-five ALDS.