I’ve watched this video a dozen times and each time I can see catcher David Freitas brain get put in a blender and I feel worse for him every time I do. He simply was never expecting anything like to ever happen. The young player has fielded countless plays at the plate and is thoroughly trained on how to defend the plate properly. He received the ball on a routine relay, which had J.P. Crawford dead to rights and was probably waiting for Crawford to immediately try and slide under him or go right ahead and attempt to Jack Parkman his ass. But when neither of those things happened and all he saw was Crawford standing and letting up on his pursuit he just did what any catcher in a beer league softball game does when they have a huge out of shape guy coming home who knows they’re way out, he just held his glove out to simply tag him, have a brief laugh where the guy running says something like “yeah I don’t think so, I need to go to work tomorrow”, like it’s an agreement between the two. But that’s not what Crawford did. He changed the way the game is played and faked him out so hard by acting like he was giving himself up then just slid real quick under the standing up right catcher. Haven’t seen home plate sliding innovation since Willie Mays Hayes told Parkman he wasn’t going to slide coming home and then preceded to dive over him.
I don’t even think the baseball purists and old dudes will say that he violated the vaunted unwritten rules of the game with this move because I don’t believe anyone ever did anything like this before. I’m sure they’re combing through the unwritten rules frantically looking for some kind of piece of literature that says you can’t pull a Houdini on the catcher but they won’t ever find one.
Some will say this is the worst tag attempt ever but I can’t blame a guy for not being equipped with the knowledge necessary to deal with something he never thought possible before. It be like going back in time and showing people from the 1500s a microwave. Their heads would explode. I only hope that David’s teammates are there for him and help get his mind right because right now, David is probably thinking all sorts of things like down is up, black is white and the Matrix is real. He needs the people closest to him now more than ever. I mean just look at the guy. He’s questioning his entire existence