OAKLAND -- At this point, we really shouldn't be surprised by anything Ramón Laureano does on a baseball field. But this was stunning, even for him.
With Justin Smoak on first base and no outs in the second inning of Sunday's A's-Blue Jays game at the Coliseum, Toronto's Teoscar Hernández sent a fly ball to deep left-center field. Laureano, Oakland's center fielder, gave chase all the way to the wall, leaped and reached over to pull back a sure home run.
"It was in the air, and what I remember is that the wind helped it a little bit," Laureano said. "I saw the wall, and I just jumped."
But the play was just getting started. Laureano hurled the ball back toward first to try to double off Smoak. Not only did Laureano manage to throw it on the fly from the warning track, he overthrew A's first baseman Kendrys Morales by about 30 feet.
"I was really pumped up," Laureano said with a laugh. "I threw it without thinking. That happens sometimes."
Fortunately for the A's, catcher Nick Hundley was backing up the play. He ran down the ball and made an accurate on-the-run throw to second base, where Jurickson Profar tagged out Smoak trying to advance. That completed the most incredible double play in recent memory.
OMG THE GREATEST DOUBLE PLAY EVER pic.twitter.com/XZTtqL2kYN— A's on NBCS (@NBCSAthletics) April 21, 2019
"You know [Laureano] has such a good arm that anything is possible," Hundley said. "When a guy makes such an incredible play, you can't let him take an error after that.
"I thought it was a homer. I didn't see him catch it. But once he [came up] with the ball, it's like, all right, now it's time to go."
The Coliseum crowd erupted in disbelief, and even Brett Anderson, who's normally stoic on the mound, let loose in celebration.
"I try to not show emotion, but that one kind of got the best of me," the A's left-hander said. "The robbed homer and then a tag and the whole ordeal. It was pretty crazy."
A's manager Bob Melvin marveled at the play on both ends, though he said he was more impressed by Laureano's catch than the throw.
"Well, the catch, because he overthrew everything," Melvin jokingly said. "He tried to throw it into the stands. Hundley did a great job backing up that play."
Unfortunately for the A's, the play came in a 5-4 defeat, sending the Blue Jays to a three-game weekend sweep. Still, the play will go on Oakland's all-time highlight reel.