{}
CLOSE

Now Commenting On:

Benoit achieves milestone with first pickoff

|
Benoit achieves milestone with first pickoff play video for Benoit achieves milestone with first pickoff

DETROIT -- Infield coach Rafael Belliard sent a signal to second baseman Omar Infante when pinch-runner Josh Harrison replaced Gaby Sanchez at second base as the potential tying run on Monday.

"I told Omar to play with him," Belliard said.

In other words, he wanted Infante to sneak in for a pickoff throw sometimes, then back off at other times, and keep him guessing. Joaquin Benoit followed Infante's lead, wanting to keep Harrison close to the bag. Never did Benoit imagine he'd whirl around and find Harrison stranded so far off the base, especially after he stared him back on a previous pitch when he was too far off the bag.

"[Catcher Brayan] Pena told me he was taking a really big lead," Benoit said. "If you see the replay, I picked up, and I stopped. I was trying to get him to go back, but he was still taking that bigger lead, and I threw the ball to second."

The result was the first pickoff of Benoit's 12-year Major League career. Not even in his 55 career starts had he recorded one. Still, one spring after another, he'd practiced it.

"We practice it in Spring Training," Belliard said, "but we don't do it much."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{}
{}
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español