Leonys Martin’s highlight play Wednesday came in the second inning, when he leaped to rob Nelson Cruz of a home run that would have put a dent in a 4-0 Rangers lead.
“Nellie is like my big brother,” Martin said. “But that’s a part of the game. I’ve got to help my team.”
But no matter how good it looked, it’s a play that should have been made. What transpired in a 60-second window in the seventh inning, with the game tied 4-4, was more telling of how good and bad Martin can be.
He dropped a bunt against a third baseman who was expecting it and steal beat it for a two-out hit. In a flash, though, he was erased on a sloppy pickoff.
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“You can’t get picked off in that situation,” Washington said. “You have no excuses. Focus.”
Martin is still learning as a player, still capable of great things and silly things, and still frustrating his manager and the coaching staff.
“He’s still got a long ways to go,” Washington said. “That was the first thing in my mind, but it wasn’t in those words.”