December 5, 2022

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Catch of the Year? Maybe. Play of the Week? Definitely

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Is it the Catch of the Year?

It’s hard to argue with Royals center fielder Michael A. Taylor’s homer-robbing catch on May 2, but what’s not up for debate is that it took home Electric Play of the Week honors presented by Chevrolet on Monday.

Defying both gravity and the wall blocking his path, Taylor climbed the wall and snagged what would have been a solo home run from Cardinals catcher Andrew Knizner in the bottom of the fifth inning. Knizner crushed the ball with a 102.6 mph exit velocity, and Statcast projected that it traveled 411 feet as it soared over the center-field wall at Busch Stadium.

“That’s one of the best catches I’ve ever seen,” manager Mike Matheny said. “The speed that he was going when he got to the ball, the instincts, seeing the wall, climbing, then having the athleticism to find a glove anywhere near it — you’re not going to see a better play than that.”

Taylor tracked the ball perfectly, peeking to see where the wall was as he sprinted back.

“It just worked out with the spacing, when I felt like I needed to jump, it helped me get a little extra,” Taylor said.

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