Topeka Seaman High School (Kansas) pulled off one of the sneakiest moves I’ve seen on a baseball field in its Kansas 5A quarterfinal baseball game against Blue Valley Southwest on Thursday at Eck Stadium on the Wichita State campus.
According to Kansas.com, in the bottom of the seventh inning and no score, Southwest’s Zachary Guertin doubled to left field, threatening to score the ever-important first run of the game. During the next at-bat, Seaman pitcher Hunter Hesseltine turned to second in a motion that signaled a pick-off, but never threw the ball. The shortstop dove to signal the ball sailed past him, and the centerfielder scrambled to chase an invisible ball. Hesseltine, with the ball still in his glove, chased the unsuspecting runner down on his way to third base and tagged him, getting Seaman out of a jam.
“That’s a play we’ve spent about five minutes on,” Seaman coach Steve Bushnell said. “It’s a pretty simple play. It’s just a little bit of deception. It happened to us, that’s how we got it.”
A great play is a great play, but when you consider that it had a tangible effect on the outcome of the game, it makes it that much more special.
Blue Valley Southwest went on to lose a 3-2 heartbreaker in nine innings after holding a two-run lead heading into the bottom of the ninth.