The Minnesota Twins have turned 14 triple plays, including two this season, during their 59-year history.
The two they turned this year were around-the-horn versions, third to second to first.
Eden Prairie’s Pat Thompson has been coaching senior teams for 33 years and had never seen one, until he did.
“We were playing Mill City Blue in the MN 50 BL league on Saturday (Aug. 3),” said Thompson. “During the fourth inning of the second game, they had runners on first and second when they hit a line drive.
“I thought center fielder Johnny Moore was going to one-hop it,” added Thompson, “but he caught it on the run. He then threw a perfect strike to Kevin Ulrich at second, who whirled and threw a bullet to Todd Stoltenberg at first.”
The coach was in disbelief.
“We tripled their guy,” he said. “Everyone in the park was amazed.”
Back slaps and high fives would follow.
Thompson said he had coached thousands of games without seeing such a feat.
“Add to that all the Twins games I’ve watched,” he said.
When asked if his over-50 league had ever turned one, the coach said he’d have to check.
“It might be a first,” he said.
When asked about an around-the-horn triple play vs. the one Moore started, Thompson said he’s not that surprised that the over-50 guys were doubled up.
“They were running on the pitch,” he laughed, “but had a hard time slamming on the breaks.”
“Johnny ran the ball down and made a pretty play,” he said.
Thompson’s Eden Prairie Saints were trailing 1-0 when the triple play got them out of a fourth-inning jam.
“I’d like to tell you that we won the game,” said the coach, “but we lost 5-1. They had a really good pitcher and we couldn’t come up with any rallies.
“We lose more than we win,” he added, “but that’s OK, as we’re probably the oldest team in the league.”
The oldest team who just turned what might be the first triple play in league history.