Aaron Altherr Hit An Inside-the-Park Grand Slam

Aaron Altherr gave the Phillies a 4-1 lead last night when he hit what turned out to be an inside-the-park grand slam against Nationals starter Jordan Zimmermann. The outfielder hit a sinking liner in front of center fielder Michael Taylor, who made an ill-fated dive. He never touched the ball, which skipped past him towards the fence. The three runners on base scored easily and Altherr scampered home without a throw.

It’s the first inside-the-park grand slam since October 3, 1999, when Randy Winn of the then-Devil Rays did it against the Yankees. It’s the 225th inside-the-park grand slam in recorded baseball history.

Altherr wasn’t done. He tacked on a solo outside-the-park home run in the fifth inning to make it a 5-1 game. He’s the first to hit an inside-the-park grand slam and an outside-the-park home run in the same game since June 21, 1987, when Bob Brower of the Rangers did it against the Athletics.

Altherr, in 123 plate appearances this season, is hitting a solid .252/.333/.533. He appears to have an inside track on one of the starting corner outfield jobs going into next season.

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  1. Francisco (FC)

    September 26, 2015 11:35 AM

    I don’t want to be mean and I have nothing against Altherr, but that should be treated as a single and a three base error. Ridiculous. The only “Slam” here was Michael Taylor’s chin on the ground.

    • Tony

      September 26, 2015 12:40 PM

      The rules of baseball are what they are, not what you might want them to be. Mental errors are, by the letter of the rules of baseball, not to be scored as errors. Taylor’s diving for the ball was obviously a mental error, and even if you don’t believe it was, the ball wasn’t catchable by the “ordinary effort” standard.

      • dejesus54

        September 26, 2015 12:49 PM

        Ergo most inside-the-park HRs. Anyone else having a Bob Dernier flashback (though that was a 3-run walkoff)?

      • Francisco (FC)

        September 26, 2015 05:33 PM

        You’re missing the point. I’m arguing for a rules change. They should reflect poor defense. Mental errors should count as actual errors. After all it’s called mental ERROR, if we recognize it as such why shouldn’t we score it as an ERROR in the game box?

        Even stupider is the on field miscommunication that allows a ball to fall between two fielders counting as a “hit”. After all, if they miscommunicate and the result is the fielders crash into each other with the ball bouncing off one or both players then it’s charged as an error. Both are defensive miscues, why is only one scenario charged as an error.

        The ball wasn’t catchable which is why I believe it should recorded as a single and then a 3 base error because Michael Taylor stupidly decided to not cut off the single.

    • Bob Denier HoF

      September 26, 2015 06:24 PM

      So if you dive & catch it, its a great play, but if you miss it its an error? That only makes sense if you watch baseball through a rear view mirror sitting back on your comfy armchair.

      • Francisco (FC)

        September 26, 2015 08:53 PM

        So if a fielder does the right thing and cut off the ball you get a single credited but if he does something stupid it turns into a Grand Slam and goes as a HR to your credit? That only makes sense if you watch baseball from your comfy chair yelling at kids to get off your lawn.

      • Francisco (FC)

        September 26, 2015 09:07 PM

        A fielder in this situation is not held accountable for a play he caused. It’s fine if he wants to take a risk and try to make a great play but when it doesn’t work out he should also suffer the consequences. In your world a fielder can attempt a great play but if it doesn’t work out, oh well the other gets a Home run instead of a single, no skin off my nose. That makes no sense at all.

      • Simplefacts

        September 27, 2015 12:20 PM

        Francisco, by more judgment on what is a “mental error” you would create havoc with the scoring leaving too much to interpretation. Is it a “mental error ” if you misplay the ball off the wall if you are the home team and should know better but not a mental error for the away team who doesn’t know the unique aspects of the ballpark as well as the home team. It would be a nightmare.

        I agree that pitchers ERA’s are way too dependent on the poor play of their fielders and feel people were much too critical when CH exploded at the poor play by the outfielders this year. I thought it was long overdue. This, too me, was RAJ’s greatest fault as a GM, he didn’t understand the role of defense on a great pitching staff. Unless you have 5 Nolan Ryan’s or Sandy Koufax’s pitching, you better be able to get to most of the balls hit as your pitcher isn’t going to K 15 a night and free outs and bases will kill you always. DB, BR and Delmon Young with MY and RH at the corners and Mini Mart at SS or 2B was a pitchers worst nightmare. How he thougt you could win with that defense was inexcusable.

      • Bob Denier HoF

        September 28, 2015 08:06 AM

        Diving for a ball with your team up by only 1 run with the bases loaded is arguably not a “mental error” or at least its not that cut-and-dry.

  2. 100Bucks

    September 26, 2015 09:35 PM

    Altherr looks like a major leaguer. He is pretty smooth in the outfield and has shown power at the plate. Maybe he can become the player that we hoped Dom Brown was going to be.

    • Romus

      September 27, 2015 07:41 AM

      Defensively he surpasses Dom Brown in most all categories except maybe arm strength.
      There, they may be in a dead heat.
      Route running he is superior, and like to think his glove is plus.

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