Astros, Rangers players put their bodies on line to make big-time defensive plays

Sporting News

Astros catcher Robinson Chirinos and Rangers outfielder Delino DeShields Jr. risked serious injury Tuesday in the field, but also saved runs through their fearless defensive play.

Chirinos put himself in the way of White Sox catcher Welington Castillo, who was barreling toward the plate, not only hanging onto the ball to record the out but also keeping Chicago from extending a promising inning. DeShields, meanwhile, made a leaping catch in Toronto at the expense of his head, which banged into the outfield wall.

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While updated MLB rules state runners cannot go out of their way to knock over a catcher at the plate, they are allowed to plow through a backstop when their opponent impedes the baseline. That's what happened with Chirinos, who fielded a slightly offline throw from George Springer just as Castillo approached.

Chirinos appeared shaken up but remained in the game.

DeShields made his risky play with the bases loaded, saving right-hander Lance Lynn from several runs scoring. He also narrowly avoided serious damage to his head. DeShields remained on the ground for several moments before trotting back to the dugout under his own power.

Each player likely gained extra support in their respective clubhouses for their all-out efforts, but maybe they'll play it a little more careful next time.

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