Eloy Jiménez is bringing pro-wrestling tactics to playing left field and working a crowd at a baseball game.
The Chicago White Sox slugger, consistently questioned about his defensive ability in the outfield thanks to numerous misadventures and the all-too-serious pectoral injury he suffered attempting to rob a home-run ball during spring training, likely had fans' hearts in their throats Tuesday night.
In the third inning, Jiménez again leapt at the left-field fence, this time hauling in a would-be homer before falling to the warning track. He stayed there a bit, seemingly gauging crowd reaction while Guaranteed Rate Field stayed mostly quiet, fearful of another outfield-related injury for the star hitter. But Jiménez knows how to play a crowd, and he quickly threw up a peace sign and sprung to his feet with his trademark smile on his face as the crowd went wild.
It was a tremendous grab by Jiménez, who continues to field questions about the endless conversation over what position he should be playing. All the while, he's maintained his desire to master left field and be a complete player, voicing his displeasure when it comes to DH'ing.
Who knows if Jiménez has actually learned from the springtime disaster that resulted in his months-long absence from the team. It's tough to unlearn instinct, after all. But this time, a leaping attempt ended in a heck of a catch — even if White Sox fans are still calming their heart rates from the entire situation.