PHILADELPHIA -- Jimmy Rollins could not believe his eyes.
In the top of the second inning in Friday's 5-2 loss to the Mets, R.A. Dickey executed a perfect sacrifice bunt to advance Josh Thole to second base with one out. Phillies first baseman Jim Thome tagged Dickey about halfway up the first-base line and nonchalantly tossed the ball back to Cliff Lee, who believed like everybody else at Citizens Bank Park that the play had ended.
In fact, Rollins motioned for Thole not to slide before he reached second base, which is something he has done since he reached the big leagues whenever there is no play at second base.
"Nice hit," Thole told Rollins as he reached second, referring to Rollins' first-inning double.
"Thanks," Rollins replied.
Then Thole inexplicably turned around and walked back to first base.
Lee dropped his head momentarily to start rubbing the ball in preparation for the next pitch when he looked up at Rollins, who was gesturing for the ball and saying his name while trying not to alert Thole. Lee tossed the ball to Rollins, who fired the ball to Freddy Galvis. At this point Thole realized he had made a mistake and started to sprint back to first base, but Galvis applied the tag before he could get there, ending the inning.
"For a split second, I thought about letting him walk back to first so we don't have a runner in scoring position," Rollins said. "But then I was like, 'No, we've got to get him out.' It's funny how fast that happened."
"I don't know what I was thinking," Thole said.