How I Got the Photo – Jon Blacker
2016 NPOY SPORTS ACTION Finalist – Josh Donaldson of the Toronto Blue Jays slides home past Texas Rangers’ catcher Jonathan Lucroy to score the winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning of Game 3 in the ALDS, clinching the series at Rogers Centre on October 9, 2016, in Toronto, Canada. (Jon Blacker / MLB Photos)
This image was made during Game 3 of the American League Division Series (ALDS). The game was tied in the 6th inning and we were now in the bottom of the 10th.
Following Toronto Blue Jays’ Josh Donaldson’s lead-off double and an intentional walk of Edwin Encarnacion, Russell Martin hit a grounder to short. With Texas Rangers’ second baseman Rougned Odor attempting a double play, and his wild throw to first base, I saw Donaldson round third and swung my lens toward home.
Texas Rangers’ catcher Jonathan Lucroy bobbled the throw from first and Donaldson slid in safely as the rest of the Blue Jays team began to pour out of the dugout in the background.
There was no time to confirm if I had the shot until later. Fifteen seconds after Donaldson scored the game-winning run, we too were rushing onto the field to get celebration images as the Blue Jays had clinched the series and were now advancing to the American League Championship Series (ALCS) against the Cleveland Indians.
The image was shot at ISO 5000, Shutter 1/1600sec, Aperture 4.0 with a Nikon D4S body and a Nikkor 200-400/4.0, by far my favourite lens for shooting baseball because it’s so versatile.