Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette wasn’t second-guessing himself after his decision to try to score in the fourth inning backfired on Tuesday in Game 1 of the wild-card series against the Minnesota Twins.
After Kevin Kiermaier’s chopper rolled under third baseman Jorge Polanco’s glove, Carlos Correa charged across the infield to scoop the ball and fire a strike home to get his fellow shortstop at the plate to end the inning.
Bichette, who was at second to start the play, ran through a stop sign from third-base coach Luis Rivera with the Blue Jays down 3-0.
“I mean, I went because I thought I was going to be safe … I was being aggressive, but I thought I was going to be safe,” Bichette said after Toronto’s 3-1 loss.
Bichette decided to test Correa, who was returning from a foot injury.
“I thought it was worth a chance,” he said. “I thought he would have to make a great play to get me out and he did.”
While the Blue Jays have been criticized for their baserunning at times this season (they had 57 outs on the bases, fifth-most in the majors), Sportsnet analysts Joe Siddall and Madison Shipman also felt Bichette made the right call on the play.
“If I put myself in the shoes of Bo Bichette, you’re coming around the third-base bag and regardless of what Luis Rivera is doing, that’s not a time you pick up your third-base coach. This is your decision,” Siddall said.
“Correa made a fantastic play on this ball. He’s running to his right, picks it up with his bare hand, throws it off balance to get Bo. Now did he get him by a lot? Sure, it wasn’t all that close. But I think this is a very fair judgment call here by Bo. I don’t think you’re expecting the shortstop to come over from where he did. We get caught up sometimes in third-base coaches or first-base coaches. There are times you do not need your coach. If it was a base hit to the outfield, sure the play’s behind you and you use him. But not in this case for me.”
Shipman praised Bichette’s aggressiveness.
“As a baserunner you’re going off of your instincts, whether or not you think you can make it,” she said. “In that opportunity, Bo decided to take a chance, try to score. We’ve talked about them with struggles with runners in scoring position. That right there was a product of Bo just trying to get something going.”