Skip to main content

MLB World Reacts To Absurd Oneil Cruz Throw

A baseball game in Pittsburgh.

PITTSBURGH, PA - APRIL 03: A general view of PNC Park during opening day between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals at PNC Park on April 3, 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

Oneil Cruz has finally arrived.

The Pittsburgh Pirates promoted the shortstop on Monday, and he's instantly made his mark. During the third inning, Cruz fired a 96.7-mph laser to first base to retire Chicago Cubs catcher Willson Contreras. 

It was the hardest throw by an infielder all season. Not even Pittsburgh's starting pitcher, JT Brubaker, has thrown a pitch at a faster velocity this season.

While Cruz's raw power was never in question, onlookers were in awe over his defensive feat.

Cruz wasn't done either. He also recorded Pittsburgh's highest exit velocity of the season -- but far below the 118.2-mph single he hit in one of two games last season -- with a bases-clearing double and set the team's highest sprint speeds on the basepaths.

The 6-foot-7 shortstop is a special talent who gives Pirates fans a reason to watch amid another losing season. Cruz is quickly showing why so many wanted to see him in the majors sooner.