Yadier Molina’s starting to get the hang of this pitching thing.
In Wednesday night’s 11-3 loss to Tampa Bay, Molina, a catcher, moved a little more than 60′ and 6″ forward and took the mound for the second time in less than a month. In doing so, he managed to record the first strikeout of his career – needing just three pitches to mow down Tampa’s Isaac Paredes.
Molina’s pair of heaters and a changeup clocked 49, 51, and 76 mph.
Clearly he’s built for comfort rather than speed.
Yadier Molina records just first career strikeout! pic.twitter.com/KpZr7qWSjk
— Baseball Quotes (@BaseballQuotes1) June 9, 2022
After ringing up Paredes, Molina couldn’t help but grin. He quickly pounded his chest twice and pointed to the sky. Teammate Albert Pujols looked on from the dugout, smiling in disbelief.
“I wanted to get some outs and try not to let them score this time,” Molina said post game. The 39-year-old was referencing the May 22nd outing when he managed to allow four hits and four runs in one unexpected inning of relief.
This time around, Molina faced four batters and gave up just two hits and no runs. His brief appearance on the hill enabled him to cut his ERA in half, from 36.00 to 18.00.
“It’s not every day you get to face a Hall of Fame catcher on the mound,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said following Tampa’s win. He went on to add that being K’d up by Molina had to irk Paredes, but he’ll eventually appreciate the moment.
“No [not a pleasant memory], and that’s part of it. But it was something to tell your kids one day when you get to face Yadi Molina.”
Tampa Bay and St. Louis wrap up their three-game series Thursday afternoon from St. Louis’ Busch Stadium. First pitch is slated for 1:10 pm EST.
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