WATCH: Rays’ Randy Arozarena makes early ‘catch of the year’ candidate against the Red Sox

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Rays outfielder Randy Arozarena (rookie status intact!) hogged headlines last year for his tremendous production in 23 regular season games followed by a legendary performance in October as the Rays barged to the pennant. In 2021, Arozarena’s bat hasn’t yet caught fire, but on Monday night in Fenway against the Red Sox (TB-BOS GameTracker) Arozarena’s glove was indeed engulfed in flames. Please regard this miracle snare of a deep liner off the bat of Hunter Renfroe

Based on distance, exit velocity (101 mph in this instance), and defensive positioning, Arozarena had just a 30 percent chance of turning that batted ball into out. He defied those odds and robbed Renfroe of extra bases — possibly even a triple — while also keeping an additional run off the board. Given that there were no outs at the time, the inning could’ve been much worse for Michael Wacha had Arozarena not been patrolling right field at that instant. 

Arozarena’s a solid defensive outfielder, but in the majors even the “merely” solid are occasionally capable of something that drops the jaws. To repeat: Yes, it’s early, but this one could wind up being in the discussion for “catch of the year.” 

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