Astros’ Joey Loperfido stuns with incredible barehanded catch in win over Twins


Houston Astros rookie outfielder Joey Loperfido made an indisputable case for catch of the year in Friday night’s win over the Minnesota Twins. 

The Astros were holding on to a comfortable 10-5 lead in the eighth when Minnesota utility man Willi Castro hit a deep fly ball to right field on a pitch from Houston Astros reliever Luis Contreras. 

Joey Loperfido

Houston Astros right fielder Joey Loperfido catches a fly ball hit by the Minnesota Twins’ Carlos Correa during the eighth inning of a game Friday, July 5, 2024, in Minneapolis.  (AP Photo/Craig Lassig)

Looking like an unlikely catch, Loperfido leaped up and managed to glove the ball before it popped out. The rookie then managed to make a barehanded catch on his way down. 

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“In the moment, I grabbed it and threw it, and I saw [Christian Vázquez] running back to first,” Loperfido said, via MLB.com.

“It was kind of in slow motion, and I just sort of snagged it on my way down. But [center fielder] Jake [Meyers] and I were like, ‘Somebody has to be out.’ We didn’t know who. He had a good angle and said, ‘I really didn’t think it touched the wall.’ Funny play, cool play. I’d like to catch it the first time, but I’ll take it.”

Initially called a hit, Houston challenged the call, and it was overturned. 

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Joey Loperfido, right, of the Houston Astros celebrates his catch for an out against the Minnesota Twins with teammate Jake Meyers in the seventh inning at Target Field July 5, 2024, in Minneapolis. The Astros defeated the Twins 13-12.  (David Berding/Getty Images)

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The impressive display of athleticism was too good even for the Twins to deny.  

“It’s got to be, right?” Twins shortstop Carlos Correa said of it being the catch of the year, via MLB.com 

“I mean, the way he climbed up that wall, hit the glove, stayed with it, caught it barehanded. That was very impressive. He even gave a headache to the umpires, so you know how crazy that play was.”

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The Houston Astros’ Joey Loperfido hits a two-run double against the Minnesota Twins during the sixth inning of a game Friday, July 5, 2024, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Craig Lassig)

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Houston escaped with a narrow 13-12 victory after giving up seven runs in the eighth and ninth innings. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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