June 29, 2011
Tulowitzki's Bugs Bunny Impression
Something extraordinary happened in the Rockies/Yankees game on Sunday. And, no, it wasn't that a Yankees game went on without a single mention of Derek Jeter - like that could ever happen. Thanks to BPro subscriber adambennett for reminding me about this incredibly interesting moment.
In the fourth inning of the game, Troy Tulowitzki laced a single off of C.C. Sabathia and over the head of Alex Rodriguez. The ball was fielded cleanly and the play ended as you would expect it, but there was something odd about the play. The announcers thought that Tulowitzki had broken his bat, but it seemed to be in one piece. Watching the replay provided the answer.
Tulowitzki hit the ball twice in one swing. The initial contact was made just above Tulowitzki's hand, causing the ball to head off in the direction of first base (and maybe foul). Tulo's swing wasn't complete, though. As he followed through, the ball then hit off the thick part of the bat. It was this contact that redirected the ball to the third base side of the field and over Rodriguez's head for a nice base hit.
After watching that Bugs Bunny-esque hit, I can't help but feel like Richard Dreyfuss in Close Encounters of the Third Kind. This means something. This is important.
Has this ever happened before? I have to imagine it has. With the millions of swings that ballplayers have had over the last 150 years, this phenomenon has to have happened before. Just like when someone dropped his bat on the way to first base but it somehow landed standing perfectly upright, the law of averages says that this must have happened.
I just can't remember ever hearing of such a thing before. And especially not against major league competition. Has anyone here ever heard of such a thing?