Power and speed are obviously important in baseball, but so is flexibility, as San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. just proved.
The rookie phenom, the son of former MLB player Fernando Tatis, contorted his body in a way that looked painful to avoid a tag Sunday against the Atlanta Braves.
Tatis led off the game for the Padres in the bottom of the first with an infield single.
Braves starter Mike Soroka caught Tatis leaning and picked him off — or so he thought.
Tatis, 20, got caught in a rundown but managed to get back to first safely by twisting away from the tag by first baseman Freddie Freeman in his slide back to the bag.
Here’s another look.
Avoiding security at Area 51 like … pic.twitter.com/R4fbD60pHd
— MLB GIFS (@MLBGIFs) July 14, 2019
That was one of the only highlights in the game for the Padres as they lost 4-1.
Soroka (10-1) pitched seven innings of shutout ball, allowing only six hits.
San Diego managed to score one run in the eighth inning against reliever Touki Toussaint, but that was it.
Tatis scored the lone run, driven home on an RBI single by Josh Naylor, and went 4 for 5.
He has had a great debut season and is in the running for Rookie of the Year.
Last but not least… Who ya got for NL Rookie of the Year? ? pic.twitter.com/nZhJnn1kfH
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) July 14, 2019
Tatis is batting .339 with 14 home runs and 33 RBIs in 221 at-bats. That’s after missing 34 games with a strained hamstring.
The Braves are 58-37 and have won five straight games. They lead the second-place Nationals by 7.5 games in the NL East. The Padres are 45-48 and have lost three in a row.
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