Friday, March 5, 2010

The Unwritten Rules of Baseball

There is a long history of retaliation in baseball. If your best player gets hit by a pitch the other team isn't going to forget it and in return they are most likely going to come after your best player. If a batter is crowding the plate, there is a good chance that the pitcher is going to throw a pitch close enough to the batter to let him think about taking a step back. These are some of the unwritten rules of baseball that have been passed down from generation to generation.

The hype yesterday was for the rematch of the Milwaukee Brewers and the San Fransisco Giants. Here is a flashback to give a little of the back story. In early September of last season the Giants were fighting for their playoff lives in Milwaukee. They had been competing with others in the NL for the wild-card slot in the postseason tournament. The Brewers were out of the playoff hunt and really only had pride to play for. The game was tied in extra innings and the slugger for the Brewers, Prince Fielder, stepped to the plate. He crushed a pitch over the outfield fence to win the game for the hometown team. His teammates ran out to greet him at homeplate. In this situation, the players usually just jump up and down and celbrate the walkoff with the player that hit it. This was not the case on this day. Fielder jumped onto homeplate and his teammates fell over like bowling pins. This was planned out and the players must have been waiting for this to happen.

Flashforward to the present day. The Brewers and Giants are facing off in a Spring Training game. The first time that Fielder steps to the plate he is hit in the back with a pitch from the former Cy Young winner, Barry Zito. So needless to say it wasn't a pitch that got away from a player. This was a direct result of the events that took place the season before. The Giants were unhappy about the song and dance number that the Brewers had choreographed. Prince Fielder took a pitch on the back and walked down to 1st base. Fielder knew it was going to happen, Zito knew it was going to happen, and most of the fans in the park were probably expecting it. It is one of the unwritten rules of baseball.

This morning on the popular radio show Mike and Mike in the Morning, Mike Golic, a former NFL player, was going off on MLB players saying this was the dumbest thing ever. He said baseball players need to grow up and that there should be celebrations as part of baseball. He was basically saying that these unwritten rules of the game aren't important. I feel bad for him. Maybe he has never been to baseball game before. Maybe he doesn't understand how the game of baseball is played. I usually agree with a lot of what these two Mikes have to say but this was a ridiculous argument. He doesn't understand these unwritten rules of baseball and baseball has been around a lot longer than the precious NFL.

Mr. Golic needs to learn a little bit more about the game of baseball before he becomes this critical of the sport. These unwritten rules of baseball are in place for a reason and maybe he would understand that if he hadn't taken so many hits in the NFL.


JoeBraga said...

I don't get how you mix up Barry Zito and Tim Lincecum.

NoDak Twins Fan said...

My bad... I fixed it.