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Who has seen a triple play?

Discussion in 'MLB Discussion' started by charlieoscar, Oct 9, 2018.

  1. charlieoscar

    charlieoscar Member

    In the thread asking who has seen a no-hitter, a recent post branched out to triple plays and someone hinted strongly that topic belonged in a new thread, so here we are.

    Texas at Baltimore (Memorial Field) on June 10, 1979, Buddy Bell lined into a 5-4-3 triple play to end the top of the 6th. The first batter in the bottom of the 6th, Benny Ayala, hit his second HR of the game (and his second in the AL). My wife took off on a food run in the top of the 6th and when she got back after the HR, asked what happened while she was gone. "Oh, just...."

    And then there was the game on Tuesday, July 17, 1990, when the Twins turned two 5-4-3 triple plays at Fenway, 0-0 in the bottom of the 4th with the bases loaded--Tom Brunansky grounded to Gary Gaetti; then in the bottom of the 8th, 1-0 with runners on first and second, Jody Reed did the same. Final was a 1-0 Sox win.

    (And to complete things, the next day in a 5-4 win, Boston tied the MLB record by turning six DPs--The Twins turned three.) TV only for me on those two. I've seen a few other triple plays on television but I can't recall the details.
  2. Hendu for Kutch

    Hendu for Kutch Member SoSH Member

    I was at the game when Chris Pratt...er, Scott Hatteberg became the only player in MLB history to hit a grand slam and hit into a triple play in the same game back in 2001. Back in the days when something like that would happen and everyone would wonder aloud "Has anyone ever done that before?" with no way of finding out.
  3. allmanbro

    allmanbro lurker

    I was at that game too! It remains my best random interesting thing seen at a baseball game. If I remember, it was actually consecutive at-bats.
  4. Mooch

    Mooch Member SoSH Member

    I was at Fenway for Valentin's unassisted triple play back in '94 against the Mariners. It was also ARod's major league debut.
  5. Hendu for Kutch

    Hendu for Kutch Member SoSH Member

    I've actually hit into a triple play myself, albeit not at the major league level. Junior year of high school, runners on 1st and 2nd take off with the pitch, line drive to the second basemen, and three very quick outs. Right before I went up the guy after me in the lineup says "Sweet, I'm getting up this inning. Unless you hit into a triple play." He had a choice name for me as we walked into the dugout.
  6. CodPiece XL

    CodPiece XL Member SoSH Member

    I was at that game too. JV homered as well.
  7. Hank Scorpio

    Hank Scorpio Member SoSH Member

    Little League, bases loaded, no outs. I was on third base. The batter swings and drops the ball about four inches in front of home plate, and it just dies there.

    And everyone on the base paths just kind of freezes. The catcher scoops up the ball and doesn’t seem to have a clue what to do.

    I try to be clever and salvage the situation, and run halfway to home, before retreating a little and trying as best I can to get the catcher to throw to third before tagging me or the plate. Through all the screaming and chaos, he unfortunately hears his coach screaming “TAG HOME”.

    He tags home. Out. Throws to third. Out. Third throws to second. Out. Second throws to first. The umpire also calls that an out.

    When we got back to the dugout, our coach congratulated us, because he never saw a team hit/run into a quadruple play before.
  8. 5050HindSight

    5050HindSight Well-Known Member Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    I wasn't at the game but was watching it live, the home run was in the AB right after the triple play. Pretty crazy. I did not remember that being ARod's debut. Also... I would have bet money it was in a day game, but not true according to BRef.
  9. Myt1

    Myt1 the FRESH maker Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    I was at this game, too.
  10. Lose Remerswaal

    Lose Remerswaal Leaves after the 8th inning Lifetime Member SoSH Member

  11. tims4wins

    tims4wins PN23's replacement SoSH Member

    I was at the Valentine cycle game that also had the triple play turned against the Sox (Naehring hit into it) in 1996. First time in AL history cycle and triple play same game. Jeff Frye debuted for the Sox that night. I sat in a luxury box. And got a foul ball.
  12. CoolPapaBellhorn

    CoolPapaBellhorn Member SoSH Member

    I was supposed to take my son to a game last August for his birthday. I ended up getting a seat in my company’s box for the game the following night, so I let my wife take him instead. They saw the Red Sox turn a triple play against the Cardinals. I saw a Betts walk off double, though, so it wasn’t a total loss. But that’s as close as I’ve come.
  13. Mugsy's Jock

    Mugsy's Jock Longtime Member Lifetime Member Gold Supporter SoSH Member

    I saw one the Twins turned against the Sox -- simple grounder to 3rd and a 5-4-3. I think it was Gaetti-Castino-Hrbek. Was sitting right near the visitor's on-deck circle so I had a great view.
  14. Saints Rest

    Saints Rest Well-Known Member Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Little League. A level (8 year olds), but T-ball.
    I’m playing 3B, runners on 2nd and 3rd.
    Batter hits a line drive to SS who catches it cleanly. He throws to me. I step on third and then tag out the bewildered runner who never stopped running from second.
    Only time I’ve ever been in the same ballpark as a triple play.
  15. bankshot1

    bankshot1 Member SoSH Member

    I was in Milwaukee on business in July 1997, and took in a game and a half at the old County Stadium. It was the 2nd game of a twi-nighter and with runners on 1st and 2nd, the BJs Alex Gonzalez (not Sea Bass) hit a hot-shot to Jeff Cirillo at 3rd, He stepped on 3rd, and then started the classic around the horn, 5-4-3 triple play.

    First game Clemens got beat by 1-0 by Steve Woodward who pitched a 1-hitter, the only hit a double by the game's lead-off hitter Otis "My man" Nixon. I got to this game around the 4th inning.

    It was a good day/night at the park, great seat, reasonably priced, with friendly locals, cold beers and tasty brats.
  16. edoug

    edoug Member SoSH Member

  17. Reverend

    Reverend for king and country Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Gary Gaetti's game with the Twins. Met him after the game. He confirmed that Kirby Puckett is a jerk.

    I told my friends. We were in the know before it was a thing. It's a strange form of validation now.

    The Red Sox won. Mr. Gaetti was in poor spirits despite having himself a truly excellent game. I was young and this was an educational encounter.

  18. jose melendez

    jose melendez Earl of Acie Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    I was at that game as well.
  19. SydneySox

    SydneySox A dash of cool to add the heat SoSH Member

    I saw Jed Lowrie turn a triple play against the Yomiuri Giants in the Tokyo Dome in 2008 with @TokyoSox. I recall a liner to third, he stepped on the bag and threw the runner out at first.

    I remember thinking he was the next hot Sox prospect and I honestly still think about that play every time I see him playing and succeeding for someone else.
  20. SydneySox

    SydneySox A dash of cool to add the heat SoSH Member

    I mean, we all thought he was the next hot Sox prospect but I, like, REALLY thought it.
  21. Sausage in Section 17

    Sausage in Section 17 Poker Champ SoSH Member

    My grandfather took me to a game when I was maybe 7 or 8 at Jarry Park, the Expos original stadium. I can’t remember anything other than I think Tim Foli was the shortstop.
  22. GoJeff!

    GoJeff! Member SoSH Member

    Was also there. I remember the general confusion of "what the hell just happened?"
  23. reggiecleveland

    reggiecleveland sublime Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    My son has been part of 3 at ages 10, 12, 15. Two were line outs with runners going.

    Other was a standard gdp, runner on 2nd tried to home got caught in a rundown pitcher backing up home airmailed throw to 3rd runner slides into third gets up goes home, cf backing up throws high to home, runner watches ball, slows down, my kid 1b, overly tall kid climbs the ladder gets the throw and tags the little bugger.
  24. jacklamabe65

    jacklamabe65 A New Frontier butt boy Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    Red Sox v. Orioles - July 15, 1967 - Made by Sox - Foy to Adair to Scott.
  25. gtg807y

    gtg807y Member SoSH Member

    I did see one but can't remember for sure which game. It was definitely a Braves game at Turner Field, and using Baseball Almanac's index, it's probably either May 6, 2004 against the Padres or April 29, 2007 against the Rockies. But either that site or Retrosheet is spreading fake news about the latter game. Baseball Almanac says the Braves were the home team and Retrosheet says it was in Denver. Maybe it's neither of those games.

    Regardless of what game it was, the main thing I remember is talking with the friend I was with that one thing we'd never seen in person was a triple play. Then a couple of innings later, while we were chatting and only half paying attention, a triple play happens. I don't think either of us noticed until after the fact.

    Unrelated, but this guy was my best friend in high school, and at one point we got to talking about the best games we'd seen in person. Mine was a 1-0 Red Sox win in 2000 where Pedro struck out 15 White Sox in a complete game win, on my hero Nomar's birthday. My buddy was at that game too, which was quite the coincidence since we both lived in Atlanta and didn't know each other at the time.
  26. cannonball 1729

    cannonball 1729 Well-Known Member Gold Supporter SoSH Member

    I've seen two live - I was at the John Valentin unassisted one in 1994, and the around-the-horn one against Tampa Bay in 2011. I remember that after the Valentin one, I and the rest of the section were very confused - we all kind of thought it was a double-play, then watched in confusion as the team ran off the field, then tried to figure out if we'd misremembered how many outs there were, and then eventually the scoreboard put up a note after an inning or so. I do remember that the Sox hit three homers in the bottom of that inning, so that was probably one of the greatest innings in Sox history.

    For the Tampa Bay one, on the other hand, there was absolutely no confusion. Sean Rodriguez hit the grounder, the Sox went around the horn, and the fans stood and cheered for what seemed like several minutes. I'd run to the snack bar to get a soft drink at the top of the inning, and I re-emerged from the concourse just as Rodriguez stepped into the box - if I'd gotten a beer or something more time-consuming than a soda, I probably would have missed it. (I was still walking up the bleacher steps during his at-bat, and I'd stopped and turned around to watch the Sox turn three. When I got back to my seat, I had to reassure my sister that I hadn't missed the play.)
  27. cannonball 1729

    cannonball 1729 Well-Known Member Gold Supporter SoSH Member

    Unrelatedly, my favorite triple play that I ever saw "live" on TV was the Randy Velarde unassisted triple play against the Yankees the day after the infamous Pedro-Clemens duel. Not just because I'd suffered through a night of Yankee fans at the game the night before...but the whole mythos around those Yankee teams was how they were the fundamental, small-ball Bronx bunters, so watching Joe Torre send the runners on the pitch - right into the teeth of an unassisted triple play - was glorious.
  28. charlieoscar

    charlieoscar Member

    Retrosheet has it correctly listed. You must have looked at the April 27, 2007 game that has the Braves at Denver, winning 9-7 while in the triple play game two days later, the Rockies won 9-7 in 11.
  29. LogansDad

    LogansDad Member SoSH Member

    I was actually a part of turning one in a men's league softball game, mostly because I try to hard. Runners on 1st and 2nd, nobody out, I was playing second and the batter lined one up the middle that I dove and caught. Flipped it out of my glove to the shortstop, who tagged second and threw to first before the runners even knew what was going on.

    I didn't even hurt myself making the play, which was nice.
  30. gryoung

    gryoung Member SoSH Member

  31. charlieoscar

    charlieoscar Member

    I turned an unassisted triple play in a slow-pitch softball game...two-room school, 8 grades where we had to get boys and girls from the 3rd through 8th grade playing to get two complete teams. I generally leave that off my résumé.
  32. Philip Jeff Frye

    Philip Jeff Frye Member SoSH Member

    I had an opportunity to go to the Valentin game with my father. My wife and I were up in Boston for a wedding the next day and my dad had tickets to the game. However, my wife said "You're not ditching me with your mother on a Friday night," so I didn't go. I've never forgiven her.

    I think my dad was getting a beer when it happened so he totally missed it.
  33. SydneySox

    SydneySox A dash of cool to add the heat SoSH Member

    My 5 year old turned one last week in t-ball.True story.

    The excitement in turning a triple play is in watching it happen at the major league level where everyone is so good at what they do, it's a miracle, not in the time you turned it because everyone took off on contact on a fly to short that the volunteer umpire should have called an infield fly but didn't.
  34. Archer1979

    Archer1979 shazowies Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    I turned one playing softball. Men on first and second, obviously, no one out. Line drive back to me pitching, threw the ball to second to get the runner leaving second early. Second baseman tagged the runner, then turned around as the guy going from first to second ran into him.

    Apparently, no one thought I could catch.
  35. Noseminer

    Noseminer lurker

    I turned an unassisted triple play in Little League. Playing 2nd base. 1st and 2nd. Runners both go as ball gets to batter. Hit and run is on. He hits a liner toward second base. I catch it one step behind the bag. Step on second and tag the runner coming from first. I clearly remember the "Oh shit" look on his face as I stepped toward him and then tagged him out.
  36. Eric1984

    Eric1984 my real name is Ben Silver Supporter SoSH Member

    I was also at the game in '94 with Val's unassisted triple play (and A-Rod's debut). It was a Friday night. I remember it happening too quick to process and then when everyone came off the field, I was skeptical of what I just saw. There had only been 9 unassisted triple plays in history at that point if I recall correctly (Mickey Mordandini had one fairly recently at the time and the previous one was in 1965).
  37. aksoxfan

    aksoxfan Member SoSH Member

    We pulled one off in a Huntsman Senior Games medal game that began with an impossible catch in centerfield.
  38. nattysez

    nattysez Member SoSH Member

    I was also at the Valentin triple-play game. An acquaintance from college had been Slappy McBluelips' double-play partner in A ball, so it was particularly exciting to see his debut. And then then unassisted triple play happened.
    #38 nattysez, Oct 24, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2018
  39. The Last DiMaggio

    The Last DiMaggio Well-Known Member Lifetime Member SoSH Member

    I was at the taping of the Triple Play in the Odd Couple movie. it was taped before a regularly scheduled game between the Mets and the Pirates. The Pirates also got caught batting out of order that day -- something I've never seen in person again.

    During the top of the ninth inning of a Mets vs. Pirates game, the Pirates trail the Mets by one run with the bases loaded and Bill Mazeroski at bat. Felix calls Oscar in the press box to instruct him to avoid eating frankfurters as he will be making franks and beans for dinner. During the phone call, Oscar misses Mazeroski hitting into a 5-4-3 triple play.

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