What is THE baseball highlight?

curly2

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It's not a famous or important play -- it was in a regular season game that his team lost 8-3 -- but I love this clip of Jimmy Wynn's blast at Crosley Field.


If this one happened today, there would be multiple cameras, including one of the roof, to capture it in its majesty. And, of course, the footage would be in color. :)
 

Mugsy's Jock

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Based on moments I’ve seen, one that always stands out is Dave Henderson’s game 5 homerun in the ‘86 ALCS. From the moment of saving the season to his leaping/twisting reaction hitting first base....this has to be on the list somewhere.
This isnt the right answer, but it’s my favorable/most memorable one. Hendu forever.
 

jungleboy

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Mar 1, 2016
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Re: the calls of the Gibson homer, here is a great Joe Posnanski piece about it. The whole thing is worth reading, of course, but here are some snippets.

It is the only great play in American sports history I can think of that has TWO iconic calls.

Jack Buck's calls came directly from his heart, unfiltered, unadorned. And his was a fan’s heart. When he saw Gibson’s amazing home run, there were no words for it, no words he could think of at the time. He could not believe it. He literally could not believe it. He had been watching baseball for a half century or more, and that was unlike anything — a wounded man who could barely walk hitting the home run off the great Dennis Eckersley, He could not believe what he just saw. And so he said, “I don’t believe what I just saw.”

Scully’s call was poetry. Vin’s love of baseball is evident in every call he makes, but it’s not the love of a fan. He loves baseball as an artist, loves it the way Da Vinci loved Mona Lisa — he wants to bring out every nuance, every subtlety, every sound and smell and sliver of sunlight. And so what makes Scully’s call art is how he quickly describes the call (“She is gone!”) and then lets the crowd noise take over and then, when the cheers have soaked through and are exhausted, he came in with the most poetic phrase, one he said was given to him like a gift from God: “In a year that has been so improbable, the impossible has happened.”
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
I fully recognize that this is not really THE baseball highlight. But it's MY baseball highlight. To my 11-year-old self, it was as electrifying as Dave Roberts' 2004 steal or Papi's 2013 bullpen salami. To this day, I marvel at how Agee managed to get all the way from the RCF alley to the LCF warning track to make this catch standing up, and hardly looked like he broke a sweat.

(At 0:26 if the time tag on the link doesn't work.)

 

ledsox

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Joe Girardi and Harold Reynolds were on MLB network breaking down the Jackie Robinson steal of home in the '55 WS. Girardi called it the number 1 play in baseball history and both agreed he was safe. Girardi pointed out that the catching glove of the day made it so Yogi had to use both hands to secure the ball and the tag was just late in getting down. Vasgergian also agreed that it was the top play. Today is the centennial of Jackie's birth.

For me, it's the Mays catch off of Vic Wertz the year before in game 1. The footage is great from different angles. It displays 3 of his 5 tools (speed, glove, arm). Mays always said he made better catches but the throw was key for him. He was about 420 feet from home plate when he let it go. Cleveland won 111 games that year and that play helped push the Giants to a series sweep.
 

Ford Frick's Asterisk

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Dusty Rhodes literally won that game with a pathetic pop fly hit down the right field line. The Indians would have won that game in any park other than the Polo Grounds (and under current rules of home field advantage, it would have been played in Cleveland).

Just two months earlier it was Cleveland's center fielder who made what many in attendance considered the best catch in history, but this touches on why it's so hard to answer this question, because even in 1954 you still often had to be in attendance to witness the greatest plays. On July 30th Larry Doby went up and over the fence at Cleveland Municipal Stadium. With his torso above the fence 380 feet into left-center, Doby made a backhanded catch of Tom Umphlett's flyball that would have tied the game for the Senators. On the other side of the fence was an awning covering the bullpen. Doby landed on it, and his right hand tore through it before it acted as a trampoline, springing him back over the fence and down onto the warning track. Left fielder Al Smith raced over to get the ball and return it to the infield to keep the runner from advancing because Doby lost consciousness. For a few seconds, everyone wondered if Doby was even alive, but he'd held onto the ball for the out. All we have are eye-witness accounts.

That said, I'll go with Gibson's home run as the greatest highlight I witnessed as it happened, and maybe the home runs of Bill Mazeroski and Bobby Thomson for importance. Joe Carter's is the most overrated. That series already felt lost for the Phillies, whether it was Game #6 or went to Game #7... Mitch Williams was going to blow it and Carter happened to be in the right place at the right time.

*
 

loshjott

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I feel like this depends entirely on your age. For a Gen X guy like me, it's Gibson far and away as number one. It had the drama of the injury, the great call by Scully, the insane crowd reaction, and the reactions of both Eck and Gibson. If you were a little bit older, it's probably Fisk. Older than that, Thompson, Mays, or Mazeroski.

I'm not sure what a younger fan would point to. Maybe McGwire's 62nd? Or that time Jeremy Giambi forgot to slide into home during a playoff game?
I agree. I'm a bit older and the first thing I thought of was Hank Aaron's 715th.

Also Fisk, which happened a year and a half later.
 

IHateDaveKerpen

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I'll throw this one in the competition for greatest catch.


I first saw it in the video that welcomed people to the Baseball Hall of Fame. I still love it.

EDIT: I miss Mel Allen. I do NOT miss stereotypical "oriental" music.