When Ty Wigginton hit a two-run, game-tying home run in the bottom of the seventh inning for the Orioles tonight, most Baltimore fans thought the most memorable part of the night would be seeing the O’s get their first home run from the first base position all year. After all, it’s no small feat to have a team wait until June 30 for the most offensively-minded position on the field to hit one out. But the very next batter, designated hitter Luke Scott, would do something even more noteworthy after giving the O’s back-to-back homers: while rounding first base on his home run trot, Scott pulled his hamstring. He would make it around the basepath under his own power to score the go-ahead run, but not before setting the season-high in trot time at 35.76 seconds.
The home run begins normally, with a hard fly ball to left-centerfield. About 5.5 seconds after contact, the ball clears the fence. Less than two second later, with Scott only about 20 feet past first base, he slows down, obviously favoring his left leg.
“And Luke Scott has hurt himself rounding the bases!” the Orioles broadcaster says.
For the next ten seconds or so, Scott looks like he’s going to be able to tough the trot out at a normal, albeit hobbled, pace. He touches second base at a very normal 11.79 seconds, and even tries to pick up the pace a little between second and third. By the time he reaches the hot corner (at 20.79 seconds), though, he’s obviously in a lot of pain, nearly standing still for a moment on the bag.
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He gingerly takes a few steps on the home stretch, accepting a weak high-five from third base coach Gary Allenson, before trying to give it one last burst of hustle. With about 60 feet to go and 26.45 seconds into his trot, he picks up a little speed, but that last for only a few steps…
…before he gives up on the trot and decides to walk the rest of the distance in. With about 20 feet left to go and already 30.42 seconds into his trot, he goes into all out walk mode (and who can blame him?).
He finally crosses home plate at the 35.76 second mark, over five full seconds slower than the previous high of 30.59 seconds set by David Ortiz back in May.
But of course it’s not exactly Scott’s fault that he injured himself rounding the bases. All jokes aside (and there were plenty on Twitter), these weird types of things happen – just ask Kendry Morales – and you just deal with them. At least it was an injury that kept Scott on the basepaths for over 30 seconds, and not a plain-old slow-moving body (or a brawl on the basepaths). The fact that he was able to push through the injury for those ~270 feet without looking for hope should be respected, not laughed at.
It wasn’t exactly what Luke Scott or the Orioles were hoping to remember the night by, but they should be happy it was handled so well. Plus, it gave the O’s a much-needed victory, and that’s always nice.