Correa makes 2 head-turning plays vs. Tribe

Correa makes 2 head-turning plays vs. Tribe

CLEVELAND -- Astros shortstop Carlos Correa can certainly turn heads with his defense as much as he does with his bat.

Correa made a pair of nice plays to end the fourth inning of Monday's 6-2 win over the Indians at Progressive Field, including a spectacular diving stop in the hole to rob Roberto Perez of a hit. Carlos Santana then hit a bullet up the middle that Correa snagged on a bounce and threw to first for the final out of the inning.

"I want to make those plays 10 times out of 10," Correa said. "I feel like I've got to give my best out there for my pitchers, and I've got to back them up. I feel like I've got to make those plays."

Starter Mike Fiers gushed about Correa's defense.

"For him to make those plays, just to pick me up, it was huge for me," Fiers said. "It was huge for the team, and we ended up winning because of it."

Correa's second great play

The play on Perez, though, was one of his best of the season. Correa made an all-out dive to snare the two-hopper and made a one-hop throw from the outfield grass to get Perez, who doesn't run well but was out by just a couple of steps.

"Obviously, I knew the catcher was running," Correa said. "That's the first thing an infielder needs to know, especially a shortstop. You've got to know the runner. I know he was slow and took my time and made a good throw."

According to Statcast™, the ball hit by Perez left the bat at 106.5 mph -- an exit velocity that results in a hit 69.7 percent of the time. Correa, however, had a -.067 first step, which means he was moving before the ball was hit, and he capped the highlight with an 80.2-mph throw.

Correa has decided that he's going to one-hop his throws to first base on balls in the hole like he did on the play to get Perez, a la Dave Concepcion.

"You've got more control of the baseball when you try to one-hop it," he said. "Obviously, we have good first basemen, but when you try to throw it in the air, you can throw it over the first baseman, and there's no chance he can pick it up."

Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.