Rangers vs. Cardinals: St. Louis Gets Out Of Inning With Double Play The Hard Way

Of players with more than 100 at-bats in 2011, only three had an OPS over 1.000: Jose Bautista, Miguel Cabrera, and Mike Napoli, the latter of whom is playing in this World Series. So we know that Napoli hits a baseball well. Here are some things he doesn't do especially well:

1. Play first base

2. Run

3. Slide

Most of the time, you take the bad because the bat more than makes up for it. It's not even close. Tonight, though, everything's going against Napoli. His error in the third allowed two Cardinals to score, and in the bottom of the fourth, he was at third base with one out. Ian Kinsler hit a fly ball to medium-deep left, and Matt Holliday caught it a little flat-footed.

That set up this:


Napoli runs like Tony La Russa and Dave Duncan in a sack race. That's the first problem. The second is that he slid to the inside of the plate. In the replay, you can see a Rangers player gesturing "DOWN DOWN DOWN", but the correct answer was "DOWN AND TO THE RIGHT DOWN AND TO THE RIGHT."

It's always tough to end a rally on a double play, but that one stung just a little bit more.

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