Florida baserunner tricks pitcher and teammate stole home.

I didn’t get to catch this game last night due to traveling but I did hear about it and what a play this was. Game Three of the series and a trip to Omaha on the line, the Gators pulled out quite the trick play in the fourth inning. Here’s the situation for you if you missed it. Tie game, runners on first and third, 1-2 count, 2 outs, and a lefty pitcher. Nick Horvath took off from first to second but stumbled. Andrew Mitchell was pitching when Horvath caught his attention just enough. Mitchell stepped off to look Horvath down for a split second before realizing that the runner from third took off for home. Too late. What a play by the Gators!

See the play here.

This play really was brilliant by the Gators, they had the go ahead run on third with two outs and a 1-2 count. Why not take a chance and try to make some magic happen rather than striking out or fighting off a tough pitch to hit. Hitting in a 1-2 count is a disadvantage for anyone, especially with a trip to Omaha on the line. But it’s even more brilliant than it seems. Notice that Mitchell actually stepped off the rubber before throwing home. Most lefties would have made a move towards first to attempt and pick Horvath off but once a pitcher makes a move to the base, they have to throw over. So if Mitchell made a move to first without stepping off, he wouldn’t even of had the option to throw home and have a chance to throw him out.

That play turned out to be the run that decided the game and the Gators won 3-2. That was certainly a play that will go down in history and some may call it a miracle. They say God is a Gators fan and a play like that may justify that statement but then again, Aaron Hernandez was a Gator. The Gators will head out to Omaha for the College World Series and try to win back to back championships.