Even making it to the big leagues doesn't mean a baseball player is incapable of making mistakes. And, sometimes, when several mistakes are made on the same play, the pros look like little leaguers.
That was the case in Houston on Sunday afternoon, as the Astros hosted the Oakland A's and gift-wrapped an inside-the-park home run to A's infielder Marcus Semien.
Semien stepped to the plate in the top of the first inning with a runner on and nobody out and hit what should have been an easy double play.
However, as you can see in the video below, Houston shortstop Alex Bregman's throw to second base sails wide of Jose Altuve and goes into right field, allowing both runners to advance. From there, right fielder Josh Reddick's throw home was cut off by Marwin Gonzalez, who fired to third base to try to get Semien out.
More bad luck struck the Astros there, though, as Gonzalez's throw got away from J.D. Davis, allowing Semien to trot home, completing the comical play:
Technically, Semien won't get credit for a home run on the play. Instead, it will go in the scorebook as an infield single. The two errors allowed Semien to make his way around the bases in true Little League fashion.
In typical baseball fashion, those were the only two errors the Astros committed, but they played a big role in the game, as the A's held on for a narrow 3-2 victory. Semien finished only 1-for-5 at the plate, but that one hit was the game changer.
Semien credited Boog Powell, the other base runner on the wild play, for forcing the Astros to make a mistake (via MLB.com):
"Boog did a really good job of hustling into second to put pressure on Bregman," Semien said. "As a shortstop, that's tough when the guy at first is really fast. Makes you rush. Then I tried to get to third, once I saw the throw going towards home, Marwin did a good job cutting it off, but we were very fortunate."
Oakland starter Jharel Cotton took care of the rest for the A's, pitching 6.2 strong innings, allowing only two runs and four hits while striking out two Houston batters. With the win, Cotton's season record improved to 6-10.
The A's improved to 54-70 with the win, but are still in last place in the American League West division, trailing the first-place Astros by a whopping 22 games. Houston, meanwhile, improved to an AL-best 76-48 on the year and lead the division by 12 games over the second-place Los Angeles Angels.
Still, losing a game like Sunday's in such excruciating fashion is something the Astros can't allow to happen again if they want to continue to be legitimate World Series threats.
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