By Matt Snyder
Sometimes all it takes to help your team win is one great tool. For Darren Ford, that would be speed. Baseball-reference.com even lists his positions as "pinch runner and centerfielder." Priceless.
Tuesday night, Ford's speed was one of the biggest reasons the Giants won the game at Pittsburgh. He entered the game as a pinch-runner in the top of the eighth. After drawing three pickoff attempts to one pitch, a single moved Ford to third. He then scored the game-tying run on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Buster Posey.
In the 10th, Ford reached on a fielder's choice. Before a pitch had been thrown to the next batter, an errant pickoff attempt dribbled down the right field line. Ford advanced all the way to third.
Then, with the Pirates infield drawn in, Freddy Sanchez grounded out to Neil Walker, who clearly looked Ford back to third. But when Walker turned to throw the ball to first, Ford took off. And he made it (see the picture above right) when the throw from first base sailed by catcher Chris Snyder (though Ford may have been safe anyway.
Watch the video on MLB.com by clicking here .
The Giants were 0-10 with runners in scoring position during the game and none of the three runs scored came on a hit. Just goes to show what kind of an impact speed can have on a game.
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