walking hitters with the bases loaded

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On Sunday, there were two major-league baseball games where a pitcher walked a batter with the bases loaded.  Cubs relievers walked the bases loaded, then hit the next guy to bring in the winning run in the 11th inning.  And Yankees reliever Scott Proctor issued two walks with the bases loaded — to tie the game, then to give away the lead.  And both teams proceeded to lose the game, as they should when walking someone with the bases loaded.

Why do managers let this happen?  I know I’m not alone in thinking that it’s never a good idea to walk someone with the bases loaded.  I’d pull any reliever who already walked two in an inning.  But if a pitcher walked someone with the bases loaded, I’d pull him immediately.  There’s no excuse.  It forces in a run.  Even if you have to throw it down the middle, there’s at least a chance that the hitter will miss it or hit it at someone.  But when you walk them, the chance of them scoring is 100%.

Here’s what a manager should do.  He should keep himself in shape, practice his pitching, then when a reliever implodes on the mound again, walking people with the bases loaded, the manager should go to the mound and demote that guy to Triple-A right then and there.  He could act like an umpire, making the motions for “You’re outta here!”  Then replace his spot on the roster with yourself.  Proceed to pitch out of the jam and tell your reliever, “This is how it should be done!”

If the manager is just too old to pitch, he could arrange to have someone in the stands behind their dugout who he knows can pitch.  When you pull your pitcher out of the game, go grab that guy out of the stands and bring him into the game, putting him in.  And of course don’t let anyone know that you rigged it.  This way it’ll look like you just pulled a random person out of the stands who can pitch better than the guy you just took out.  That’ll teach him to walk people with the bases loaded!  Plus it’ll create lots of publicity for yourself and the team.

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4 responses »

  1. A wise manager should initiate the application of the Fibonacci sequence of integers to their pitching rotation, thus assuring victory and confounding the other teams’ managers.

    Or, for ladies’ fast pitch softball, they should initiate the Femi-Nazi sequence, to yield similar results. 🙂

  2. I don’t think Femi-Nazis play softball… I’ve heard they don’t understand the concept of “fun”.

    But the Fibonacci Sequence does have a lot of applications. Too bad very few people know what it is…

  3. Last night the Tampa Bay Devil Rays were leading the Toronto Blue Jays 11-6 going into the 9th inning. The Blue Jays rallied in the bottom of the 9th, tying it and still having the bases loaded. Then the pitcher walked in the winning run on 5 pitches. Yes, it was a walk-off walk.

    The bottom of the 9th inning started with a walk, then consecutive doubles, so the manager switched pitchers. The next pitcher walked the next batter, then got a groundout, then gave up a double. Then a new pitcher was brought in, who gave up a double. Then another pitcher was brought in, who intentionally walked Frank Thomas. Then a passed ball allowed the two runners to advance, so they intentionally walked Troy Glaus. Then the next batter up, Matt Stairs, walked to win the game. That’s 5 walks in the inning, plus 4 doubles. That enabled the Blue Jays to score 6 runs on 4 hits (and they even left the bases loaded).

    I’d demote the losing pitcher to the minors right then. It’s never good to walk someone with the bases loaded, but when it’s a tie game in the bottom of the 9th with the bases loaded, it’s the worst thing you can do! The batter just has to stand there, while the pitcher gives away the game. In that situation, the pitcher should make the batter hit it. Throw it down the middle if you have to. If he gets a hit and wins the game, at least he earned it.

  4. Have you ever played for the majors? No? Then lay off me man. it is a tough world out there. You want to know why i walk in runs (unintentionally)?? I’ll tell you:
    1) It’s your fault
    2) I tried the Bacon-n-cheese diet for breakfast
    3) the Gutbomb for lunch,
    4) and the Fab burger challenge for dinner.

    I read on your blog how awesome it felt to eat these meals (with photos to prove it). So I did. Thinking that if I boost my self-esteem, then I would play better. Wrong! I became short-winded during practice. My throwing arm felt heavy. My pitches weren’t coordinated, etc.
    Like I said, it’s your fault. 😦

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