Originally written on The Other Paper  |  Last updated 11/17/14
In a 14-inning game that lasted nearly six hours, Joe Girardi put everything in the hands — more specifically the feet — of a rookie pinch-runner who, on what should have been a game-winning hit,  missed third base and almost cost the New York Yankees a win in the craziest game of the season.

Melky Mesa's base-running fail almost cost the Yankees a game that could have turned an improbable comeback against the Oakland A's into an ugly loss — all in his major league debut.

Mesa, stood at second base with the score tied at 9-9 when Alex Rodriguez slapped what looked like the game-winning hit through the infield.  Mesa went to round third but missed the bag by about a foot but the rookie had the sense to turn back and get back to the base.

After his Yankee teammates leaped out of the dugout with their arms raised in victory and A-Rod clapping his hands thinking he had the game-winning hit, Mesa sheepishly stood at third base when they all realized the game wasn't over because of his flub.  That 12 inches probably felt like a mile to the kid.

Luckily, for the Yankee, Girardi can file this base running gaffe under "W" for We can laugh about it now thanks to the generosity of the A's defense.  Mesa was thrown out in a force at home plate in the next at bat, but A's first baseman Brandon Moss failed to handle Eduardo Nunez's two-out grounder allowing Ichiro Suzuki to score for the Yankees 10-9 win.


It was the wildest game of a normally eventful New York Yankees campaign.  The fans who toughed out the marathon contest were treated to everything from missed calls at first, collisions at home plate, comebacks by both teams and finally the dramatic moment that could have defined the 25-year old Mesa's Yankee career.

Luckily for the embarrassed rookie, the Yankees won and Mesa even got the ultimate form of Yankees absolution — a hug from Derek Jeter.



After the game, Girardi smoothed things over by praising Mesa for having the sense to get back to third base and not getting tagged out.

"That would have been a tough one for the kid to swallow," Girardi said of Mesa.  "A lot of the guys gave him hugs.  We told him keep your head up.

"It just happened in his debut.  He won't forget it."


MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Chargers keep playoff hopes alive with comeback win

Robin Lopez responds to Khloe Kardashian dating rumors

Report: Jermaine O'Neal 'intrigued' about joining Mavs

Report: Robert Griffin III likely to return to Redskins

Izzo criticizes coaches, players after embarrassing loss

Report: Kings, Nets talking Deron Williams trade

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Is Rampage Jackson heading back to the UFC?

WATCH: DeSean Jackson mocks Eagles after win

Michael Vick: Jameis Winston is the future of the NFL

Report: No NFL team is moving to Los Angeles in 2015

Report: 49ers looking for young, offensive mind as next coach

Sheldon Richardson: I'm on the same level as JJ Watt

Dan Mullen wears funny 'Christmas Vacation' sweater

WATCH: Redskins FB gets in Eagles fan's face after TD

WATCH: Utah runs trick play on first offensive play of game

Mick Cronin misses game with unruptured aneurysm

Steve Alford: Kentucky is best team I've coached against

Peyton Siva jokes that Rick Pitino is in the mob

WATCH: Montrezl Harrell ejected for throwing punch

UNC wearing Jordan-era throwback uniforms

Brian Kelly: Justin Brent gets 'distracted,' is in my doghouse

Five free agent signings that should happen in 2015

Reporter asks Rajon Rondo awkward question about trade

Video: Swaggy P elbows Steven Adams in throat, gets ejected

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Mullen wears funny Christmas sweater

RG3 returning to Redskins?

Tom Izzo hot after bad loss

Kings, Nets talking Deron Williams trade

WATCH: DeSean mocks Eagles

Vick: Winston is the future of the NFL

No NFL team in LA next season?

UNC rocking Jordan-era throwbacks

Reporter asks Rondo awkward question

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

Jon Lester and the Cubs

Report: NFL players used 'horny juice'

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.