Wednesday’s Hot Clicks: Phillies Coach Sends Maikel Franco Into Certain Doom on Play at the Plate

He was out by the skin of whatever part of your body has the thickest skin

The most exciting play in baseball is the play at the plate, hands down. There’s nothing like darting your eyes back and forth between the guy rounding third base and the outfielder playing the ball and gathering to throw. This play at the plate from Tuesday night’s Mets-Phillies game had all the drama of an automatic intentional walk, though.

With two outs in the fourth inning, Cesar Hernandez slapped a single into leftfield. Maikel Franco, who was on second base, got the green light from third base coach Dusty Wathan and headed toward home.

Dead in the water is an understatement.

Franco hadn’t even reached third base by the time Mets leftfielder Jeff McNeil fielded the ball! He would have had to be the fastest player in baseball to score on that one. But no, he’s the 263rd fastest player in baseball, or the 59th slowest, depending on how you want to look at it. He is also the slowest player on the Phillies.

So yeah, Dusty Wathan made a brutal decision to send Franco there, and Phillies fans noticed.

It didn’t really matter in the end, though. The Mets won 9–0 behind a stellar pitching performance by Zack Wheeler.

Damian Lillard hit one of the best game-winners ever

Damian Lillard went off in the Trail Blazers’ series-clinching Game 5 win over the Thunder. He scored 50 points, but none more audacious than the final three. His buzzer-beating three came from nearly midcourt, right in Paul George’s face.

The call was even better in Korean.

Dame even rubbed salt in the wound by waving goodbye the Thunder before his teammates even had a chance to mob him.

George said after the game that it was “a bad shot” and Dame had only one thing to say to that.

The best thing in sports, x2

The NHL treated us to not one but two Game 7s Tuesday night, which is basically like Christmas.

In the first, the Bruins beat the Maple Leafs rather easily, 5–1, in Boston. Toronto is still the only Canadian team not to win a playoff series in the salary cap era (post-2004 lockout).

The key goal was this one by Sean Kuraly, who pushed the Boston lead to two goals early in the third period.

That game pales in comparison to the nightcap between the Sharks and Golden Knights, though. After a questionable major penalty call against Vegas’s Cody Eakin, San Jose took a one-goal lead by scoring four goals during the ensuing five-minute power play opportunity.

The Knights scored one more to force overtime but the Sharks won it in the extra period and advanced to the next round.

Vegas’s Jonathan Marchessault said the call was “a f---ing joke” in a three-minute rant after the game.

Oh god, Melo is still trying to come back

Being cast aside by the Rockets just 10 games into the season and failing to catch on with another team all year would appear to be a pretty clear sign that nobody in the NBA is interested in employing Carmelo Anthony any longer.

But no, Melo was back in the gym Tuesday getting some shots up—and judging by his trainer’s caption, it wasn’t just for fun.

Melo looks thin and he certainly hasn’t lost his sweet shooting stroke, but his best chance of playing in the NBA again is probably a farewell tour with the Knicks on a 10-day contract.

Oh, and don’t sleep on the fact that he’s wearing a beanie indoors on a 75-degree day in New York.

The best of SI

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Around the sports world

The NCAA denied a Virginia Tech football player’s waiver request to be nearer to his sick mother for what can charitably be described as dubious reasons. ... By at least one measure, the Yankees have been hit harder by injuries than any team in recent memory.

By at least one measure, this is the worst take I have ever read

He really took some convincing

This is amazing

My dad did a thing. from r/golf

You have to love when the coaches get in on the trash talk

Blink and you’ll miss it

How have I never seen this before?

I laughed harder than I should have at this

Not sports

A Carolina Reaper eating contest is a scene full of milk and vomit. ... Jeopardy! champ James Holzhauer has officially blown past the $1 million mark. ... Early reviews for Avengers: Endgame are in and they’re quite positive. ... Nicolas Cage sang an oddly angry karaoke version of “Purple Rain.”

This made my brain hurt

I missed the anniversary but the first YouTube video was uploaded 14 years ago Tuesday

This new Will Smith movie looks wild

A good song

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