WATCH: Batter steals 1st base for 1st time in professional baseball history

Rule changes now allow this in the Atlantic League
Posted at 3:34 PM, Jul 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-14 18:41:01-04

A batter in the Atlantic League became the first-ever professional baseball player to steal first base Saturday.

Thanks to an experimental rule change in the Atlantic League, Tony Thomas of the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs stole first off a wild pitch in the sixth inning of Saturday's game vs. the Lancaster Barnstormers.

In partnership with Major League Baseball, the Atlantic League just implemented a rule that states players may steal first base on "any pitch not caught in flight." The batter can be thrown out if he attempts to steal the base.

The Atlantic League is also experimenting with a new umpiring system, in which an automated system, rather than a home-plate umpire, calls balls and strikes.