Now Commenting On:

Wieters wins stolen-base showdown with Ellsbury

Wieters wins stolen-base showdown with Ellsbury

Wieters wins stolen-base showdown with Ellsbury

BALTIMORE -- The fifth inning of Thursday night's 13-inning win over the Red Sox featured a top-notch matchup.

Tommy Hunter came on to pitch against Shane Victorino, but the matchup that caused manager Buck Showalter to marvel was catcher Matt Wieters vs. stolen-base threat Jacoby Ellsbury at first base.

Ellsbury took off for second, and Wieters popped out of his crouch and pegged the speedster with a near-perfect throw to shortstop J.J. Hardy.

"You see certain catchers, a guy like that gets on base, all they put down is a one [for a fastball]," Showalter said. "The first pitch [Hunter] threw was a breaking ball. I can't tell you how few catchers will do that. A couple that are in the Hall of Fame, or are going to be. So that's about as good a throw as you'll ever see."

A good benchmark for a catcher is to get the ball from his mitt to second base in less than two seconds. Showalter said that Wieters' throw was clocked at 1.78 seconds.

"That was impressive," he said. "They talk about under two [seconds]. I can't tell you how far away 1.78 is from 2. It's an eternity."

But Ellsbury did later steal a base off Wieters in the 10th inning, his Major league-leading 30th swipe of the season.

"You can't try and judge your throw based on how fast the runner is," Wieters said. "You've just got to make as good of a throw as you can, and hopefully, it's good enough.

"Buck's really put an emphasis on getting times [to the plate] down throughout the organization and on the whole staff. They give me a real good chance, and I have a chance no matter who the baserunner is."

Derek Wetmore is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español