Baseball,  Rules

Boundary Catches

Some of the greatest catches in baseball history involve a fielder flying into the crowd or over a fence with blatant disregard for self-preservation in order to make the catch.

Last year's head-over-heels grab by Austin Jackson as he tumbled into the Red Sox bullpen to rob Hanley Ramirez of a homer run is a great example.


I'm also a huge fan of this grab by Mookie Betts to make the last out in a Rich Hill complete game shut-out.


(And it's not my fault that two of the greatest catches in all of the history of baseball happened 30 feet away from each other.)

In addition to the catch, you also get Hill's hilarious slo-mo reaction to the play at the end of the clip. You don't need to be a professional lip-reader to figure out what he's saying. In some versions I've seen, his mouth is pixelated so you can't see what he's saying.

Cricket has its own version of this. And because of the rules of the game, these grabs may even be more acrobatic and spectacular than their MLB counterparts. To be a legit catch -- and to prevent six runs -- the fielder can't make contact with the boundary or the ground beyond the boundary when he's in contact with the ball.

The result is that catches require the sideline footwork skills of a wide receiver and the volleyball skills of, well, a volleyball player. And sometimes, they even require another fielder.

And here's an amazing two-man grab from Australia's Big Bash League from earlier this year...


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