Video: Oneil Cruz throws hardest ball of season by infielder
Oneil Cruz showed off all his tools during his season debut in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ game against the Chicago Cubs on Monday night.
The Pirates shortstop prospect cleared the bases with a 3-run double in the bottom of the third and added an RBI double in the seventh. But the play that had everyone talking came in the top of the third inning.
Cruz fielded a ground ball from Willson Contreras with a backhand and then threw a bullet to first for the out. Cruz’s throw was measured at 96.7 mph, which is the hardest recorded thrown ball by an infielder this season.
So: ONeil Cruz has been back up for about 25 minutes. He's already got the hardest tracked throw by an infielder of the season (96.7). I think that's going to work. pic.twitter.com/0vOCbs6BVo
— Mike Petriello (@mike_petriello) June 21, 2022
Not only did Cruz throw the hardest ball of the season by an infielder, but he also had the Pirates’ highest recorded exit velocity and fastest sprint speeds of the season.
3 innings into his 2022 debut, @Pirates' Oneil Cruz has registered:
🏴☠️The hardest throw by an infielder in @MLB this year (96.7 mph)
🏴☠️The hardest hit ball of the year by a Pirate (112.9)
🏴☠️The 3 fastest sprint speeds of the year by a Pirate (31.5, 30.7, 30.3) pic.twitter.com/nScTK5mD4A
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) June 21, 2022
Hit, run, and throw — Cruz can do it all. You can see his exit velocity and running speed on this play:
Oneil Cruz is already one of the best athlete in the big leagues. Look at this! pic.twitter.com/DNKz3QD2rN
— Andrew Fillipponi (@ThePoniExpress) June 21, 2022