WATCH: Jose Bautista's arm breaks Colombian hearts in World Baseball Classic
Bautista isn't used to left field, but that didn't matter
Jose Bautista hasn’t played left field for the Toronto Blue Jays during the regular season since 2009. Nonetheless, Bautista played left field on Sunday for the Dominican Republic in its World Baseball Classic contest against Colombia.
Predictably, the ball found the out-of-position Bautista at a crucial time: with the game tied at 3-3 and winning run at third base in the bottom of the ninth inning with one out. But Bautista wasn’t shook; instead, he came through with a solid throw home -- one that allowed catcher Welington Castillo enough time and a proper angle to make a game-saving tag:
Just like that, the game rolled into extra innings. Colombian players Tito Polo and Adrian Sanchez were ejected for arguing the call, but it’s pretty evident home plate umpire Tripp Gibson III got it right. In case you were wondering about the plate-blocking rules:
There’s a lot on the line, too. A Dominican Republic win would result in them advancing to the second round with a pool victory. A Colombia win, and there’s real potential for a three-way tie at the top -- one that, based on the tie-breaking rules -- would likely result in Colombia winning the pool.