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Bad Ideas Newsbeat

Saturday, October 27, 2018

WSJ: Our Insane Ideas To Save Baseball

Wall Street Journal sports writers “bullpen” a rules change article:

The one way to fix baseball involves changing one of the most sacred aspects of the game. Are you ready for Strike Four? Here’s why baseball needs a fourth strike: Batters have never been worse at making contact. Sure, they hit tons of homers—but they’re striking out more than ever, which means you can wait in line to get beer and never miss the ball even going in play. Three strikes just isn’t enough anymore. Four strikes means fewer strikeouts.

This plan also will reduce pitching changes: four strikes only gets implemented when a team brings in a second pitcher during an inning. The pitcher who begins an inning gets the normal three strikes. Someone who comes in mid-inning, well, he has to deal with four. Is it worth bringing in a reliever to get one out midway through the fifth inning if he has to deal with four strikes?

One flaw: “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” doesn’t have the same ring if it becomes “three but sometimes four strikes you’re out at the old ball game.”

This is behind a leaky paywall - if you Google some of the text, you can get to the full article via the Google link. The best part of the exercise is the poll at the end on which idea is the worst.


Thursday, October 18, 2018

Dave Littlefield latest candidate to interview for Mets’ GM role

The Mets have interviewed Tigers’ vice president of player development Dave Littlefield for their open GM role, SNY’s Andy Martino confirmed on Wednesday.

New Yorkers unfamiliar with the peculiarities of Littlefield’s disastrous time in charge of the Pirates may at least recall his official scouting assessment of the height of Derek Jeter’s butt.

Everyone gets intrusive thoughts from time to time (e.g. “I wonder how far I could throw that baby), but it’s almost never a good idea to act on them.


Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-19-2018

Washington Times, September 19, 1918:

A stereotype habit of Boston baseball writers during the bleak winter months is to visit the homes of the various ball-flinging athletes.
...
[Melville Webb tells the story of his visit to Babe Ruth’s house:] “The fire was finally started,” Webb continued, “but after a few minutes Babe took a look at it and was far from satisfied the way it was progressing.

“The big fellow walked over to a corner of the kitchen, picked up a five-gallon can of kerosene and proceeded to pour the ingredient on the smoldering wood.

‘I say, Babe, aren’t you taking a chance there?’
‘Oh, no, Mel, there’s no danger. I never “booted one” doing this—that is, ‘cept twice. Once it was my fault, and the other time it wasn’t. The time it was my fault I poured the kerosene in under the fire through the draft door. I sure was wrong that time, for the physics blew the top right off the stove. The time I wasn’t to blame was when I made a mistake and grabbed the gasoline can.’

Babe being Babe.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: September 19, 2018 at 10:25 AM | 41 comment(s)
  Beats: bad ideas, dugout, history

Friday, August 17, 2018

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 8-17-2018

Chicago Eagle, August 17, 1918:

“The most peculiar happening in baseball during my career took place when I was with the St. Louis Feds,” said Bob Groom. “In a game at Pittsburgh, we had the bases filled and Larue Kirby came to bat. He hit for a home run, his hit accounting for four runs. Then the Pittsburgh management discovered that according to the score card Delos Drake should have hit ahead of Kirby. The umpire ruled Drake out for not having batted and allowed Kirby to hit over again. This time he tripled, driving in three runs, a total of seven runs in one time at bat.”

A neat story, but Larue Kirby never hit a triple against Pittsburgh or had more than two RBI in a game.

But it does lead me to wonder if there’s any situation in which it’s advantageous to intentionally bat out of order. A situation something like extra innings, first and third, one out, no pinch hitters available, and a horrendous-hitting pitcher (Don Carman and his career .057/.066/.057 line, for example) at the plate. He’s almost certainly going to make an out and if he manages to make contact, it’s probably not getting out of the infield. He’s at least as likely to hit into a double play than score the run. Can a manager skip the pitcher, report it to the umpire himself, and send the next batter to the plate?

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: August 17, 2018 at 10:05 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: bad ideas, batting out of order, dugout, history

 

 

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