It was a big moment when it happened, but after the Mets’ 7-5 win over the Padres in extra innings on Friday night, Tommy Pham throwing out Ha-Seong Kim at third base may have preserved the team’s winning streak.
With the score tied 3-3 in the bottom of the seventh, Kim hit a one-out double to the right-field corner. Pham took him time getting to the ball seemingly on purpose as to bait the runner to try his arm.
Kim would take the bait.
The Padres infielder would try and take third base when Pham launched a missile to third baseman Luis Guillorme ahead of Kim’s slide. Kim looked to avoid the initial tag, but he slid off the bag enough for Guillorme to apply the tag and get the out.
“I think it was a good play on their part with one out. I thought it took a really good throw from Tommy,” manager Buck Showalter said after the game. “Tommy’s throwing better than I’ve ever seen him. With some tag ups and other things they were doing I think they weren’t probably anticipating Tommy to throw as well as he is this year.”
Showalter then referenced Gene Hackman in the movie Hoosiers, saying “I think he was trying to catch Tommy watching the paint dry.”
Kim would be removed from the game because he actually kicked a cooler he thought was empty in the dugout stairwell. He wound up jamming his toe and is considered day-to-day.
“I take full responsibility of the play I made and then also the mistake I made,” Kim said via MLB.com’s AJ Cassavell. “In the future that’s not going to happen.”
According to Baseball Savant, Pham’s arm strength is in the 71st percentile in the majors, which is considered great, and averaging almost 88 mph on his throws.
“[Pham] always talked about his arm and I never really believed it. Now I can believe it,” Francisco Lindor added with a laugh.
There were a lot of laughs after Friday’s win, the Mets’ sixth consecutive victory in a row, and Pham’s throw from the outfield was a big part of it. Juan Soto was the next better and hit a double of his own that would have given the Padres the lead.
The Mets would hold San Diego off and take the game into extra innings where New York scored four runs in the 10th to seal the win.
The game would have very different if Pham doesn’t get Kim at third, and now the Mets will look to run their winning streak to seven on Saturday when the two sides face off again.
Source: Yahoo Sports