The Houston Astros keep finding ways to make 2018 weirder and weirder, and it’s not even the All-Star Break yet. The defending World Series champions potentially had their strangest episode of the season Tuesday night at Minute Maid Park.
As if Alex Bregman shaving his mustache during a game last month wasn’t bizarre enough, the Astros infielder had a walk-off hit that traveled no more than five feet to defeat the Oakland Athletics 6-5 in the 11th inning.
The play was a complete mess, to say the least.
Bregman hit a slow roller down the first-base line, stumbled out of the box thinking it was foul, but somehow the ball stayed fair. Then, when A’s catcher Jonathan Lucroy grabbed the ball and attempted to tag him, Bregman jumped to avoid it and Lucroy dropped the ball.
“At first I thought Bregman thought it was foul,” Astros manager AJ Hinch told MLB.com. “Then as he started to maneuver around, you see the ball kick out and [Lucroy] couldn’t tag him under control. Then Bregman takes off.”
Once Bregman began to head to first base, Lucroy’s throw hit his helmet and the ball ended up in right field.
All that was left was for Kyle Tucker to score.
Weird? You better believe it.
“That was definitely very weird,” Bregman told MLB.com.
Houston pitcher Justin Verlander, who threw six scoreless innings before the bullpen collapsed, probably had the best explanation of the play.
For the 24-year-old Bregman, this has been a magical season. The Albuquerque, NM native and former LSU star is batting .282 with 19 home runs and 59 RBIs, is a first-time All-Star, and now has been the guy at the plate for four of the six walk-off wins for the Astros this season.
Although Bregman did not earn the RBI on Lucroy’s throwing error, this is definitely one of the weirdest plays for a team which has seen a lot of weird already this season.