Welcome to Week 16 of THIS WEEK IN GIFs, everyone. With September comes the coexistence of America's best and fifth-best sports, football and baseball, and if these GIFs are any indication, it ought to be a pure delight.
Voting will remain open until Sunday at 11 p.m. This is a tremendously important issue, so as always, let the arguments fly in the comments.
DAMN IT, ASTROS: PART III
My God. All right, y'all. I'm just gonna go ahead and unilaterally induct the 2012 Houston Astros into the Animated GIF Hall of Fame. I mean, you saw Part 1, yes? You saw Part II, didn't you? One could grant the Astros just a little bit of slack for those, since shallow-infield dribblers can be confusing things -- after all, the catcher, pitcher, and third/first baseman all have a play at the ball.
But this? This is stepping on a base. In 2011, baseball players successfully did this 56,679 times, and that's only counting the times they were called safe. A rough estimate suggests that they probably were called out after stepping on a base another 80,000 times.
So that's 136,000 bases stepped on, and this is the only time I've seen one blow someone up like this. Marwin Gonzalez doesn't simply lose his footing and fall. He goes AIRBORNE. For once I wish GIFs had sound, because I wish I could hear the Sonic the Hedgehog spring.
Finally, a GIF that took place in Louisville! God knows what this Kentucky fan could possibly have had to high-five about during UK's 112-4 loss to the Cardinals Sunday. But unlike most GIFs that take place in the crowd, there's really only one person to watch: him.
It's just about the least successful high-five I can imagine: upon making contact, he immediately falls into oblivion and disappears forever. Like a trap door sprang under him or something. It's magical, and I think it's getting my vote.
DAMN IT, GIANTS
OK, this is the longest GIF in the history of THIS WEEK IN GIFs. Apologies if your browser throws a fit, but I just had to share it.
GOD I'm so glad football GIF season is back. You should know that Le'Veon Bell weighs 240 pounds.
Last week, commenter nKoan rightly noted that I had left out this deserving GIF. With this play, Jayson Werth joined an elite fraternity of outfielders who have made barehanded catches, which is mostly made up of a) guys who played in 1855, and b) Kevin Mitchell, as seen here. Seeing as Werth totally just skirted by on technicality, I bet the next underground meeting of this secret society is gonna be pretty awkward.
(Via Grant Brisbee)
Keep your eye on center field. Holy smokes. I agree with Grant: at first I was disappointed that the camera angle wasn't better, but after some reflection I don't think it could possibly be better.
(Via Ryan van Bibber)
Murray's backfield maneuvering here is positively Barrysandersian, but I'm most interested in the end. Why does he cut in? The scope of this GIF doesn't show the entire field, but you should know that he had daylight straight ahead. And yet, he cuts away from the sideline and right into the teeth of the Giants' secondary. And it's not like he's trying to follow his blocker, either, because Dez Bryant isn't changing course.
There has to be some sort of logical fallacy at work here. Doesn't this happen fairly often? I know I've seen ball carriers do this many times, reducing a touchdown to a 40-yard play. Someone smarter than I am (i.e. you) should weigh in.