Though MLB players often make even the most difficult plays look routine, they sometimes do the exact opposite of that, too.
Unfortunately for Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb, he did the latter on Sunday afternoon against the Cincinnati Reds, making a play that his teammates will likely make fun of him for in the coming days.
In the top of the third inning, the Reds were threatening to break the 0-0 tie, loading the bases with two outs and slugger Adam Duvall at the plate.
However, as you can see in the video below, Duvall hit a little dribbler to the right side of the mound, forcing Newcomb to field his position. After Newcomb made a diving stop, he had trouble getting up to make a normal throw, so he simply rolled the ball to first baseman Freddie Freeman to record the out and end the inning:
The out was made and the Reds' scoring threat was nullified, so all was well for the Atlanta pitcher. After all, there are no style points in baseball, so he was right to do whatever it took to make the out.
Newcomb threw five scoreless innings to lead the Braves to an 8-1 win over the visiting Reds, but much like the play above, Newcomb's outing wasn't exactly pretty. He gave up five hits and five walks while striking out only two Cincinnati hitters.
He also threw 94 pitches in only five innings, forcing the Braves to go to the bullpen earlier than they'd have liked. Still, a win is a win, and Atlanta will happily take it.
The Braves got a grand slam from catcher Tyler Flowers in the bottom of the fifth inning to break open the scoring and put the game out of reach for the Reds.
Sunday's victory was only the second of the season for Newcomb, who is now 2-7 with a 4.13 ERA and 71 strikeouts in 69.2 innings of work across 13 starts. The rookie left-handed hurler has also issued 42 walks and given up 32 earned runs in those 13 appearances.
With the win, the Braves are now 55-67 on the season and are in third place in the National League East division, trailing the first-place Washington Nationals by a sizable margin of 18.5 games. They're a little better off in the NL wildcard race, but still trail the Arizona Diamondbacks by 11 games in the race for the second spot.
The Reds fell to 53-72 with the loss and are in last place in the NL Central, trailing the first-place Chicago Cubs by 13.5 games.
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