Chicago Cubs infielder Javier Baez has always had a flair for the dramatic, and has never been shy about letting his emotions show on the field.
On Sunday, he found himself in the middle of a big moment during the Cubs' win against the Toronto Blue Jays at Wrigley Field.
Trailing 5-4 in the bottom of the 10th inning, Baez was on second base as catcher Alex Avila stepped to the plate with a chance to tie the game.
As you can see in the video below, Avila rips a single to right field, allowing the runner on third to score to tie the game at 5-5, but Baez had a win on his mind. He races around third and makes a brilliant slide to the back of home plate, narrowly avoiding the tag from the Toronto catcher to score the game-winning run and send the Cubs off with a 6-5 victory:
Baez's celebration, in which he pops to his feet and simulates a perfect landing in gymnastics, was very appropriate, as it was indeed a perfect slide. From there, the celebration was on, as teammates mobbed Baez and Avila for their game-winning heroics.
The Cubs and Blue Jays went into extra innings tied at 3-3, but Toronto scored a go-ahead run on outfielder Kevin Pillar's RBI single and added another run on a bases-loaded walk drawn by Nori Aoki, sending the Cubs to the bottom of the 10th with their backs against the wall.
Kyle Schwarber quickly struck out to start the frame, which should have left the Cubs with only two outs to try to come from behind. However, the third strike got away from catcher Raffy Lopez, so Schwarber was able to reach base.
Following a Ben Zobrist single, the Cubs had runners on first and third with no outs. Schwarber then scored on a second wild pitch, cutting the lead to 5-4. Anthony Rizzo grounded out after that, bringing Baez to the plate with one out.
Then, shockingly, Baez struck out, but that third strike was also dropped and Baez reached first. Jason Heyward then got hit by a pitch, loading the bases.
That's when Avila stepped into the batter's box, and the rest was history. His single plated two runs and the Cubs finished off a wild comeback and completed a weekend sweep of the Blue Jays.
The moral of this long and winding story is that you never know what's going to happen in baseball. Anything can happen on any given night.
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