I just stumbled upon this top ten list of Scott Rolen defensive plays at The Blue Jay Hunter. I immediately decided to make one for Jack Wilson. I spend much of my time pointing out that the former Pirates that Neal Huntington has traded were mostly overrated by Pirate fans. I think that often overshadows just how much I enjoyed watching these guys play. Probably the biggest treat of the past decade of Pirate baseball has been watching Jack Wilson play shortstop.
I started out looking to make a top ten list of all plays available on MLB.com, but there were just too many to choose from. I ended up with Jack’s 2009 top 17 defensive plays in a Pirate uniform. Enjoy.
17. 4/12/2009 – Triple play.
16. 5/14/2009 – This is the type of play that will never make a Web Gems segment. Jack simply does everything right to turn an Albert Pujols chopper into a double play.
15. 4/21/2009 – Just a simple diving stop to take a hit away from Dan Uggla. Ho hum.
14. 7/27/2009 – Diving stop deep in the hole and a strong throw from his knees.
13. 7/19/2009 – Jack has a real knack for finding the ball. Here he reacts quickly to a deflected comebacker to get an out.
12. 7/4/2009 – Jack slides to his right, backhands and fires to first in one motion. Very quick release.
11. 7/20/2009 – Just another 6-3 in shallow left field.
10. 6/6/2009 – See number 11.
9. 6/8/2009 – Another great play on a deflected comebacker.
8. 7/6/2009 – Jack runs down a flare in shallow center.
7. 5/29/2009 – Jack’s range makes this play look simple.
6. 5/16/2009 – Diving stop in shallow center.
5. 5/18/2009 – Another great play deep in the hole.
4. 7/7/2009 – Jack takes a hit away from Miguel Tejada.
3. 5/31/2009 – A sure single becomes a double play.
2. 4/12/2009 – We will miss seeing Jack and Freddy doing this.
1. 7/11/2009 – It’s a shame that this game is remembered for the Matt Capps ninth inning meltdown, because this ridiculous play by Jack should have been the story. After making a great play to run down the pop-up, he immediately looks for more and doubles up Jimmy Rollins. This is the reason Jack has been the Pirates’ shortstop for so many years.
BONUS: 5/27/2006 – Jack’s great play in the Pirates’ 18-inning victory over Houston.