Nava makes great defensive play in win over Tigers

Nava makes great defensive play in win over Tigers
May 31, 2012, 5:56 am
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BOSTON After making the offensive gem of the game on Tuesday a two-out, three-run double against Justin Verlander Daniel Nava turned around on Wednesday and made what was arguably the defensive play of the game.With the Sox leading by one run in the top of the seventh, Alex Avila led off with a shot off the wall. But the Tigers catcher hesitated around first, while Nava read the carom perfectly.Nava, who was making his 20th start in left field since being called up on May 10, fired a perfect throw to Nick Punto at second, cutting down Avila.Leadoff hitter, sure double, the balls high, its off the wall, said manager Bobby Valentine. He actually practiced that before the game, almost the exact same spot, and he turned, threw a strike and Nicky put a great tag on him. Thats a big-league play.That practice paid off.I practice balls off the wall all the time because in my mind you can't practice that enough, Nava said. It seems all the balls off the wall come off a different way. I was practicing out there before the game and the carom I got was similar to what I experienced before the game, so I was able to get it quickly. I only wish I could have gotten off a better throw because Nick Punto had to turn and make the catch and then put a great tag on the runner. He made a great play. I had a ball the other day that hit off the wall and it bounced straight down and it was nothing like tonight's. So that's why I'm saying I've got to get out there and see every type of carom off the wall.
Nava, who doubled in the fifth, has now hit safely in 18 of his 20 games. After his two-out walk in the seventh, he scored the go-ahead run in the Sox 6-4 win over the Tigers.