One of the hardest plays for a centerfielder is the hard-hit line drive right at them, especially if it requires retreating back to the wall. The angles and sight lines and timing tend to get all haywire, requiring some deft athleticism to make any grab. Washington Nationals' Victor Robles found himself in the unenviable position of going back on a deep smash over his head last night against the Philadelphia Phillies, yet was somehow able to turn a base-hit into a not one, but two outs.
The catch was very good yet obviously dwarfed by the missile to first base. Using technology revealed in the Enemy of the State movie, we can understand Robles' throw traveled no less than 288 feet in the air before finding its intended target.
Try to throw something 288 feet at your next backyard barbecue — after you double-check which surgeons are in your network. It ain't easy.