Something spectacular happened in the sixth inning of last night’s game against the Brewers: Kolten Wong got a hit. And the ball didn’t even leave the infield.
The announcers called it an “infield hit,” but I’m not sure that’s the right technical term, because I think the last time a Cardinal player did that was in the mid 2000s.
Then, Wong did something else spectacular. I was messing around on my computer, when I heard a commotion coming from my television set. I was initially confused, because I knew the Cardinals were batting, and I was certain that I hadn’t heard the crack of a bat. As I scanned the television for signs of what might have happened, I stumbled upon an anomaly.
You see, Kolten Wong was on second base, but as I said, no Cardinal player had hit the ball. I struggled for a minute to figure out how such a thing could have happened. After a few seconds of rumination, I remembered a long-forgotten term: “stolen base.” This rare baseball feat occurs when a player is so fast that he can actually make it from first to second base before the catcher can throw the ball there.
In the eighth inning, Wong repeated his first feat (an “infield hit,” for those of you who need a reminder). He hit a high chopper to Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez and managed to make it to first base before Ramirez could get the ball there.
At that point, I caught myself making some very premature comparisons to Ricky Henderson, and waiting for him to steal another base.
He didn’t, but he did go from second to home on a single without having to slide, which may be just as impressive.
But Wong wasn’t done yet! With two outs in the top of the ninth, Kolten used his speed to stay out of a double play, and then proceeded to steal his second base of the night.
It was truly an unprecedented display of raw speed.
Granted, the Cardinals are not built on speed, but boy is it nice to see a little! It’s a refreshing breath of fresh air after watching Molina lumber down the line night after night. Maybe we could get a little more of that stuff.