The Rays love Kevin Kiermaier’s defense and he was rewarded with his first career start against the Cincinnati Reds, playing center field.

He went 0-4 at the plate with 2 strikeouts, although he was robbed of one hit on a hard groundball. But he will always remember his big league debut for this throw, nailing Joey Votto at the plate by a mile.

What’s great about this play is not the actual throw, which was on one hop and a little up the first base line (notice the radar gun actually clocked the throw at an unimpressive 55 mph).

What’s great is the jump he got on the ball and how he wasn’t afraid to charge the ball at full speed. A lot of outfielders will hesitate, unsure if the ball will take a bad bounce.

Not bad for a kid who was a 31st round draft pick less than four years ago.

 
 

10 Comments

  1. balfoursballfours says:

    Hey Cork…love the site…just FYI, though the “unimpressive 55mph” was after the hop. Keep up the good work

    • Cork Gaines says:

      Yes, it was and even with pitchers there is a difference between speed out of the hand and speed at the plate. But it’s not like the ball went from 95 to 55 on one bounce.

      • balfoursballfours says:

        No doubt. I just wanted my 9 year old nephew (who can throw 55mph) to know that he wasn’t the next center fielder for the Rays.

  2. Dave L says:

    Wow 2-1 then 1-0 its baseball heaven 1967 all over again. Pitching duels are thing of beauty….. when you win them….

    One thing I will say about the home plate changes, I am glad to be rid of the runner out by a mile so lets just blow up the catcher option. Sure its exciting in a primal sense but this isnt football.

    Hanigans play as a game caller, reciever and blocker have been outstanding. I am very impressed by him. Offensively I am not too worried. He seems to have good, patient, at bats. He is a professional MLB catcher first and foremost and thats what our young starters need to help them navigate a 162 game season.

    • Mr. Smith 1980 says:

      Speaking of catchers; was anyone else annoyed/concerned by SloMo’s snap throw down to third in the ninth inning of game one (Friday) while hanging on for dear life to a 1 run lead?
      The risk/reward of making that throw just doesn’t add up for me. Fortunately it worked out as it was an accurate throw, but heaven help us if it hadn’t been.

  3. Dave L says:

    The Rays did a great job in the first two games keeping Cool Papa Bell Jr off the basepaths completely.

    What the hell are the Reds doing continuing to bat him leadoff? Hes just a kid, let him earn his way up to that. Too bad he’s in the NL. He would be the classic Maddon #9 second leadoff guy at that tender age until he proved himself. His OBP is pathetic

    That’s too much pressure.

    Looks like I was wrong again with Ramos starting and Bedard to the pen. Bedard is finally accepting reality. Why struggle to be a declining starter when you can possibly be a decent lefty in a good pen.

    He has the benefit of knowing the Rays will use him just right and put him in a position to succeed. Good career move.

    I dont know what will happen tomorrow but it wont be 2-1 or 1-0. Rays better unlimber the timber.

  4. Adam says:

    Keirmaiers defense is amazing. I remember watching him down here in brisbane when he played for Canberra in the ABL a few years back. At our stadium during day games the centerfielder would
    look in to the setting sun. He took an over the shoulder catch in deep centerfield that he looked like he lost in the sun, and turned and threw out a tagging runner at third base. Was by far best play that year I saw. Got the chance to talk to him after the game when he recognized my rays cap, seemed a very polite kid. Hope he goes a long way in the game.

  5. Rob says:

    Wow – Cobb to the DL for an oblique strain. This is getting ugly.

    • Dave L says:

      So the question of who would be the better starter of the 3 will by unfortunate necessity play itself out on the field to a definitive answer.

      Look on the bright side, our rotation now features 3 lefties….

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