Hannah Keyser breaks down the dispute of MLB’s infamous ‘unwritten rules of baseball.’
HANNAH KEYSER: Apparently, the self-evident greatness of Fernando Tatís, Jr.'s Monday night grand slam against the Rangers caused a bit of a stir and some dissension over whether or not it's a good idea to hit grand slams whenever you can. The Padres were already up by 7 runs in the eighth inning when Tatís swung on a 3-0 count to put the game away. Rangers manager, understandably, Chris Woodward was not thrilled and specifically cited the "unwritten rules" of baseball, that don't actually say this 'cause they're not written down anywhere, but apparently imply that you're not supposed to do that. And then Padres manager Jayce Tingler also took the position that really hot hitters should settle for walking in a run, because that'll make the opposing pitcher feel less embarrassed. Even Tatís apologized under duress.
You know who hasn't heard of this unwritten rule which, while still unclear on its precise parameters, seems tailor-made to strip the game of its most viral moments? Opposing pitchers.
Red Sox pitcher Eduardo Rodríguez tweeted, "3-0 counts rule-- side eye, side eye-- you just have to pitch better if you don't want that to happen. I never see that rule, and I take myself as an example because I'm the king-- guy with a crown, guy with a crown-- of 3-0 counts-- shruggy man, shruggy man."
- Like my mom reading Twitter.
HANNAH KEYSER: Amir Garrett went with a simple, "I don't follow unwritten rules-- ellipsis."
Collin McHugh provided a whole tutorial on how pitchers should prepare for aggressive hitters. "Swinging in a 3-0 count should not be against any rules, no matter the score. Before a game I would always look up to see what percentage a guy swings 3-0. If it's over 20%, it means I just can't groove one. The guys who will never just 'give you a pitch' at the plate are the toughest ABs." Good point.
And Pirates pitcher Joe Musgrove offered up his thoughts-- quote, "You can't sit in the dugout, you can't take your mask off, you're not allowed to high five, you can't sit next to anyone, no spitting"-- dot dot dot dot dot-- an extra dot-- "all rules that suck. Guys that will hack it in any count are the most dangerous ones."
And I don't know what he's trying to say. He might just be anti-rules, like, altogether, which is not the message of this particular segment by any means.
- Let it burn!
HANNAH KEYSER: But I think he ends up on Tatís's side, which just goes to show you, even opposing pitchers think that unwritten rule's dumb.
- It's dumb!