Nate Freiman, internet sensation.
Well, not quite up to Justin Bieber standards, perhaps, but a pieced-together video of Freiman’s slide at home plate was making the rounds Monday night and Tuesday.
The 6-foot-8 A’s rookie first baseman, not the fastest man on the field, galloped home from second base and did a part-dive, part-slide, part-scramble, getting his hand across home plate for the run that put the A’s ahead to stay in an 8-6 win over the Tigers.
Asked what an East German Olympic judge would give Freiman on form, shortstop Jed Lowrie said, “not a 10.0.’’
“But for effectiveness, that was a 10.0’’
It also graded high on the comic relief scale.
“There’s something on a baseball field every day that will make you laugh,’’ catcher Stephen Vogt said. “I was laughing. We were all laughing. But the No. 1 most important thing was that he scored the run.
“He did what he needed to do to score the run.’’
Freiman had he’d heard about the slide from family, friends and strangers. And did we mention teammates? The video clip, available at: assets.sbnation.com/assets/3111983/FreimanSlide08262013_long.gif … was being passed around the team bus as the A’s headed back to their suburban Detroit hotel after the game.
“I’ve seen it a number of times,’’ Freiman said. “It was an internet sensation.’’
Vogt was in the on-deck circle when Daric Barton’s single gave Freiman a chance to score from second base. As the big man came toward the plate and a possible collision with Bryan Pena, Vogt waved Freiman toward the outside of the plate.
Freiman went down head and hands first and did what can perhaps best be described as a barrel roll. He pounded his fist into the ground after scoring, then got up in a jubilant mode.
“In retrospect, a feet-first slide probably would have done the trick,’’ Freiman said. “But I wanted to make sure we got that run.’’
Lowrie said that effort, while comic in its own way, was what’s best about baseball.
“There was a lot of emotion in what he did,’’ Lowrie said. “That’s good for all of us to see.’’