For years, Orioles catcher Chance Sisco could read scouting reports and articles where prospects analysts questioned his defense. Not long after he was drafted you could find some evaluators that felt he’d never catch a day in the major leagues.
Well, the American League leader in caught stealing percentage today is Sisco. He has the best mark in the league.
AL leaders, caught stealing percentage:
.471 - Chance Sisco, Orioles (8-of-17)
.429 - Mike Zunino, Seattle (6-of-14)
.400 - Jason Castro, Minnesota (6-of-15)
.353 - Welington Castillo, Chicago (6-of-17)
You could interview Sisco for a long time and you won’t hear him brag on himself. And he didn’t today during an interview but he did admit he gets some sense of satisfaction out of showing those that questioned his talents that he may be able to catch for the Orioles and throw out runners.
“No one wants to get knocked on anything. It can get tiring and you just have to prove them wrong,” he said.
On April 21, Sisco threw out three Cleveland baserunners attempting to steal. He caught Michael Brantley trying for second in the sixth inning, got Francisco Lindor at second base in the seventh inning and threw out pinch runner Rajai Davis at third in the ninth.
Sisco explained this is not about any adjustments or improvements in his arm strength.
“It’s about footwork. Just being as consistent as possible with my footwork. Getting the throw on its way as quick as possible. And having (Jonathan) Schoop and Manny (Machado) up the middle to make some adjustments on throws, if they are not on the base. It is all about footwork for me. My arm hasn’t changed in the last year,” he said.
There are a lot of ways to make improvements throwing out runners, and Sisco has done that. It started on the farm with minor league catching instructor Don Werner and it continues here with the Orioles.
“There are a lot of things that go into it, but if your footwork isn’t up to par, it’s going to be tough to be able to get a strong and accurate throw down to second base” Sisco said. “My arm strength hasn’t changed, it’s just been quicker.”
In recent games, Sisco’s bat has perked up as well. In his past four games he is 4-for-13 with two doubles, a homer, four runs and four RBIs. He is batting .333 in 15 home games.
“It is just about getting comfortable for me,” Sisco said. “Felt comfortable the last few games, but that can go in and out so just trying to get comfortable, stay consistent and stay with my approach. Just do what I can do.”