Keibert Ruiz isn’t even half a season into his major-league career, but the 23-year-old backstop is already compiling an impressive highlight reel behind the plate.
The Nationals’ catcher showed off his arm, which already led the league with 11 runners caught stealing this season, Friday against the Milwaukee Brewers when he teamed up with Josh Bell to back-pick Rowdy Tellez at first base in the third inning.
It was the second time in five days that Ruiz picked off a baserunner. His first one came in walk-off fashion. In Sunday’s series finale with the Cincinnati Reds, Ruiz threw out an aggressive Nick Senzel to end the game.
Back-picks have become something of a lost art in MLB. With his second of the year, Ruiz joined the Oakland Athletics’ Sean Murphy (also two) as the only players with multiple such plays in 2022. Just 15 teams have seen even one of their catchers successfully pick off a runner this season.