The MLB is one of the oldest sports out there and through the decades there have been some mind blowing plays. But perhaps the most spectacular plays in baseball occur when the ball is in the air and a player trying to catch it. While the dives, jumps and leaps don’t always work out for the defender, when they do, they make up some of the most brilliant plays in sports.
1. Jim Edmonds Diving Catch
Now this obviously looks impressive, but you almost need to be a baseball player to understand just how had a catch like this is to make. When an outfielder is running with his back to the plate trying to catch the ball, it can be extremely easy to lose the placement and trajectory of the ball. Not only that, Edmonds is somehow able to track the ball with his head tilted backwards and then dive to make the over the shoulder grab. Just an amazing display and proves why he was among the best of his time.
2. Willie Mays Over the Shoulder
While the catch itself is brilliant, the history and iconic status of this catch makes it a sure-fire addition for this article. Not only was the difficult of the catch ramped up due to the pressure of the game being a World Series game, but the catch is so famous that it actually has its own Wikipedia page. In a play that basically saved his team the game, Mays makes an amazing, outstretched over the shoulder catch to in the top of the 8th inning that stopped at least a run from scoring.
3. David Wright Barehand
For my money, this is still the best and most difficult catch I have ever seen in MLB history. Not only is it incredibly hard to maneuver your body to catch a surprise broken bat pop up, but when you are in a full sprint, it makes it even harder. To make a catch in that situation is hard enough, but to do it with a bare hand is almost unheard of. Wright was a defensive masterpiece and this is without a doubt his best offering.