Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Monday, August 19, 2019

Brian Snitker Pulls Ronald Acuna Jr. for Lack of Hustle: ‘You’ve Got to Run’

Ronald Acuna Jr. is one of the most talented young players in baseball, but he had to be taught a hard lesson Sunday.

The outfielder hit a long fly ball off the wall in the third inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers but failed to run it out, thinking it was a home run. It ended up being a single, and he failed to score in the inning.

Manager Brian Snitker decided to pull him from the game to teach him to hustle on every ball in play

...

“You’ve got to run. That’s not going to be acceptable here,” Snitker said, per David O’Brien of The Athletic. “...The name on the front is a lot more important than the name on the back.”

Isn’t this sort of passive-aggressive warring against your best player usually the sort of thing that sabotages teams?

 

 

QLE Posted: August 19, 2019 at 07:43 AM | 91 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: brian snitker, hustle, ronald acuna

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. The Duke Posted: August 19, 2019 at 08:29 AM (#5872474)
That quote from Snitker is a good one. I’m sure it’s a well-worn cliche but I’ve never heard it
   2. Sweatpants Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:11 AM (#5872486)
Isn’t this sort of passive-aggressive warring against your best player usually the sort of thing that sabotages teams?
Yeah, like when Bobby Cox did this with Andruw Jones in 1998. Hastened the end of that Braves run and brought on Jones' swift collapse.

Also, how is pulling someone for lack of hustle being passive-aggressive? Snitker was up-front about why he did it.
   3. Spahn Insane Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:15 AM (#5872487)
I was gonna say, this is a strange use of "passive-aggressive."
   4. PreservedFish Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:18 AM (#5872488)
Isn’t this sort of passive-aggressive warring against your best player usually the sort of thing that sabotages teams?


How is this passive-aggressive? It's just aggressive. He benched him and told him in no uncertain terms why he was being punished. There's nothing passive about it.

Passive-aggressive would be if Snitker didn't say a word, and later just kind of hovered near Acuna and made some vague morose statements about wishing that everyone on the team cared as much as he did.

   5. PreservedFish Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:18 AM (#5872489)
Darn it, cokes.
   6. . Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:21 AM (#5872490)
Sounds racist to me. Or white privileged. Something anyway. Has to be.
   7. Walt Davis Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:23 AM (#5872491)
I can't wait for him to pull Soroka after 2 innings because he didn't run out a little grounder to 2B. :-)
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:33 AM (#5872493)
Seems like the absolutely appropriate thing for a manager to do and say. He addressed the problem immediately, and directly, and made it clear what sort of behavior he expects in the future. There should be zero controversy here.

This is also somewhere where the players' "Kangaroo Courts" should get involved. If it cost you a couple of grand when you loafed, players would probably learn the lesson even faster.
   9. puck Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:45 AM (#5872497)
It is passive aggressive. You should see aggressive.
   10. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:48 AM (#5872500)
It is passive aggressive. You should see aggressive.

You want him to get in a physical fight with Acuna in the dugout, a la Billy Martin and Reggie?
   11. Ithaca2323 Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:02 AM (#5872504)
This is also somewhere where the players' "Kangaroo Courts" should get involved. If it cost you a couple of grand when you loafed, players would probably learn the lesson even faster.


Unless of course, the players don't see it as that big a deal, unless it's egregious, repeated, or a symptom of some larger issue.

   12. . Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:10 AM (#5872506)
Unless of course, the players don't see it as that big a deal,


It's true, they likely don't -- but that's a bug, not a feature and why teams have managers. Nor does something have to be a "big deal" for it to be a "deal." It's clearly a "deal" and the only perspective one can have that holds that it isn't is a political or quasi-political one whose ultimate source is found somewhere other than baseball.

I know this simple observation tends to trigger some, but workplaces do in fact tend to frown upon selfish and lazy workplace acts. RAJ is a terrific player and I like watching him, but like most people he isn't perfect.
   13. Rowland Office Supplies Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:11 AM (#5872507)
Do we still have this conversation if that ball barely sneaks into the front row? I've seen too many "hustle" doubles from Ronald to think he has a hustle problem...but if you're gonna stand there and watch it, it better be gone.
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:11 AM (#5872508)
Unless of course, the players don't see it as that big a deal, unless it's egregious, repeated, or a symptom of some larger issue.

Kangaroo courts were never about the egregious. They were about busting chops, and making fun of guys who screwed up. Acuna certainly screwed up; standing on first after hitting a ball off the wall.
   15. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:15 AM (#5872510)
Meh, I think we always make a bigger deal out of such things than they are.

You don't have to look too far to find sainted, beloved, hustlers who occasionally break into a trot prematurely - just off the top of my head, I can very much recall instances of my own belowed (Rizzo, Javy, KB, Schwarbs, etc) celebrating a long fly prematurely... to say nothing of instances where a ball sure didn't get out by much that could have turned into such a case.

It happens.

   16. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:24 AM (#5872513)
A more aggressive approach would've been to pinch run for Acuna immediately after the hit, and have him walk back to the dugout in front of everyone. Snitker disciplined Acuna in a public but not humiliating way by replacing him between innings, after he talked to him in the tunnel. Sounds like he handled it right.
   17. . Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:25 AM (#5872514)
It does happen, but there's no reason in the first place to pose and loaf.(*) As Rowland said, if you pose and loaf, you better be right.

(*) And posing and loafing are self-centered, not team-centered, acts. Especially posing. Loafing, yeah -- it's a long season. Sometimes the legs are legitimately not there.
   18. Davo Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:27 AM (#5872515)
I used to always get pissed when players wouldn’t hustle. Now I’ve shifted—I am totally fine with the guy jogging to first when he hits a grounder to the pitcher or whatever. It’s just not worth it.

But that’s not what Acuna did. Acuna walked out of the box on a deep fly ball because he thought it was a homer. But...it hit the wall and he got stuck with a single.

I’m fine calling that out. Not saying you have to take off in a dead sprint like Pete Rose or whatever, but I’m with the Braves manager: “You’ve got to run.” He cost his team an extra base just because he wanted to admire his hit. Come on!
   19. bfan Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:50 AM (#5872527)
A more aggressive approach would've been to pinch run for Acuna immediately after the hit, and have him walk back to the dugout in front of everyone. Snitker disciplined Acuna in a public but not humiliating way by replacing him between innings, after he talked to him in the tunnel. Sounds like he handled it right.


This is spot on, and it was against the best team in the league when you are down 3 and fighting in the early to mid-innings to get back into the game, and if he runs it is second and third with no outs. It was a terrible act under all circumstances, but you cannot even get the "forgive every player act crowd" to justify it as meaningless hustle; it was a really big moment in the game, series and season.

A lot of Braves fans get on Snitker for his lack of sabermetric awareness (him batting Inciarte near the top of the line-up was a favorite thing to [appropriately] criticize), but this seems exactly the way to handle a situation like this, and I applaud him for it.
   20. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 11:05 AM (#5872532)
I’m fine calling that out. Not saying you have to take off in a dead sprint like Pete Rose or whatever, but I’m with the Braves manager: “You’ve got to run.” He cost his team an extra base just because he wanted to admire his hit. Come on!


Meh, in a game the Braves won 5-3.

Looking at the game log - I see Max Fried only made it to 3B on this (he doubled to lead off the inning). I see Acuna was then CS - probably a worse impact - while Albies followed up with a pop-up and Freeman K'd to end the inning.

I stand by the MEH. I emphasize the MEH.
   21. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: August 19, 2019 at 11:27 AM (#5872542)
Once again...

celebrating
Not this.
posing
This.
admir[ing]
Or this.

Different.



   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 19, 2019 at 11:30 AM (#5872544)
Meh, in a game the Braves won 5-3.


Yes, clearly this outcome was predestined by the 3rd inning. They were down 3-0 at the time.
   23. PreservedFish Posted: August 19, 2019 at 12:07 PM (#5872556)
Zonk, you think Snitker should've MEH'd too?
   24. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 12:27 PM (#5872567)
Zonk, you think Snitker should've MEH'd too?


I'd have handled it differently -- I mean, if this was an "IMPORTANT GAME!" because it's Braves/Dodgers jockeying for home field throughout in a rubber match finale of the set, I certainly wouldn't be yanking my best player out of the game in the 3rd inning.... thus costing the team a premium bat and glove while simultaneously shortening my bench unnecessarily.

Snitker's action was orders of magnitude more stupid than Acuna's.

   25. Howie Menckel Posted: August 19, 2019 at 12:37 PM (#5872569)
what if Acuna stood at home plate admiring - sorry, elebrating - his "home run" and then got thrown out at first base, instead of only getting a single off the wall (and then erasing himself anyway with a CS)?

   26. Spahn Insane Posted: August 19, 2019 at 12:44 PM (#5872571)
Snitker's action was orders of magnitude more stupid than Acuna's.

Guess I'm not seeing it. If this were an elimination game, I might agree with you, but Snitker's clearly taking the long view here. (To turn your "meh" on its head, the Braves won the game despite Acuna's absence for most of it.)
   27. jmurph Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:16 PM (#5872580)
(To turn your "meh" on its head, the Braves won the game despite Acuna's absence for most of it.)

Also despite his turning a double into a single.

I'm closer to Zonk on this one: it's a (moderately) bad thing to do, but I don't see why it merited yanking him from the game rather than just lecturing him in the dugout in front of his teammates, or some other non-substitution solution.
   28. . Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:20 PM (#5872583)
Snitker's action was orders of magnitude more stupid than Acuna's.


In addition to selfish and lazy acts by co-workers, actual workplaces also tend to frown on management playing favorites. This, too, is something that really shouldn't be necessary to have to explain or certainly to re-litigate.
   29. SandyRiver Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:32 PM (#5872587)
Looking at the game log - I see Max Fried only made it to 3B on this (he doubled to lead off the inning). I see Acuna was then CS - probably a worse impact - while Albies followed up with a pop-up and Freeman K'd to end the inning.

This makes me wonder what Fried was doing. Also admiring? Tagging up? Unless he runs like me (in my 70s with bad knees) he could've been 2/3 the way to 3rd and could then return safely to 2nd should the ball be caught. From there he'd easily score even if the carom came straight to the fielder.
   30. PreservedFish Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:33 PM (#5872588)
I don't see why it merited yanking him from the game rather than just lecturing him in the dugout in front of his teammates, or some other non-substitution solution.

Because yanking him is a real consequence. Lecturing him is just words.

I don't think any part of this is a really big deal - not Acuna's infraction, not the loss of Acuna for half an important game, not Snitker's reaction - and I decline to make an armchair judgment about what should have been done. Sometimes leaders need to balance short-term success with long-term factors.
   31. JAHV Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:44 PM (#5872592)
Players should run out everything, so I'm a big fan of what Snitker did. Good for him. He absolutely made the right call. I think there needs to be actual consequences for the player, and playing time is really the leverage the manager has. I assume the expectation was set a long time ago, so a lecture doesn't go far enough.
   32. Rusty Priske Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:46 PM (#5872594)
And posing and loafing are self-centered, not team-centered, acts. Especially posing. Loafing, yeah -- it's a long season. Sometimes the legs are legitimately not there.


Wait, you think 'loafing' is more forgivable than 'posing'?

Seriously?
   33. jmurph Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:47 PM (#5872595)
30/31: sure, but to get to "consequences" and "leverage" you have to first agree that failing to run on this play and coughing up a base in the 3rd inning is a significant infraction, and I just don't agree.
   34. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:48 PM (#5872597)
It is passive aggressive. You should see aggressive.


it's a three-pronged attack:
   35. bfan Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:49 PM (#5872598)
This makes me wonder what Fried was doing. Also admiring? Tagging up? Unless he runs like me (in my 70s with bad knees) he could've been 2/3 the way to 3rd and could then return safely to 2nd should the ball be caught. From there he'd easily score even if the carom came straight to the fielder


Fried is actually quite fast and is sometimes used as a pinch-runner, but as a pitcher, he has very little experience running the bases.

I think your break down is incorrect, though; if he thinks the ball has a chance of being caught, he has to stay close to 2B. Once the ball lands safely, there are zero outs in the inning, and thus percentages would be not to take a chance of getting thrown out at home. Acuna, if he is running from contact, has no risk of running as far and as fast as he can, as if the ball lands, Fried is on 3rsd at least.
   36. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:50 PM (#5872599)
Because yanking him is a real consequence. Lecturing him is just words.


Yeah, but a consequence to whom?

He's still getting paid for the game... and now he's got the afternoon off!

   37. . Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:54 PM (#5872601)
Wait, you think 'loafing' is more forgivable than 'posing'?

Seriously?


No, I lied on the internet to impress a bunch of people on the internet I don't really know.

Of course, seriously. It's really not even close. Posing is nothing but self-centered. Nothing else is involved.
   38. bunyon Posted: August 19, 2019 at 01:58 PM (#5872603)
Geez, Zonk, you don't think Acuna cared about getting pulled? If he didn't care, why is this a big deal at all?

As for his getting pulled, Snitker has had plenty of time to think this over. Acuna has gotten worse about admiring homers this year, doing so on balls that are closer and closer to not going out. I'm sure Snitker noticed and - I hope and assume - has said something to Acuna before. Well, it finally bit Acuna in the ass, as it was inevitably going to do. So, now is the time to act.

It's good managing and, unless he's a total dumbass (I don't think he is), Acuna will learn from it. Someone mentioned that they wouldn't do this in an elimination game, which is right. It's also why you do it now, so that you don't have to do it in a bigger game.
   39. SoSH U at work Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:05 PM (#5872607)

30/31: sure, but to get to "consequences" and "leverage" you have to first agree that failing to run on this play and coughing up a base in the 3rd inning is a significant infraction, and I just don't agree.



But sitting him for six innings is also an insignificant punishment. Hell, if he'd been given the full day off on Sunday for freshness sake, no one would think twice about it.

   40. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:09 PM (#5872609)
Geez, Zonk, you don't think Acuna cared about getting pulled? If he didn't care, why is this a big deal at all?


Where did I say it was a big deal?

I've consistently said the opposite (see: "meh").

All I'm saying is that I think pulling him was stupider than Acuna's... whatever.

I don't watch enough Braves baseball to know, but if this is a chronic problem with Acuna, I doubt pulling from a game is going to fix it (indeed, given that's he got a set-for-life, even if below market contract - probably the opposite).... and if it's a really rare thing and just a moment of vanity? I'd imagine he already felt sufficiently chastened anyway just by virtue of standing on 1B and answering the inevitable post-game questions about it.

So like I said.... double meh.

I'm just saying that in the grand scheme of things? I think pulling him out of the game was dumber.... but whatever.... managers do dumb things all the time. Hell, it happens occasionally that we see a manager end up in an "oops! I forgot to get a reliever up!" - I can recall this happening to both Gabe Kapler and Joe Maddon, at at minimum - should the GM march down to the dugout and pull him and have the bench coach manage the rest of the game?
   41. JAHV Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:12 PM (#5872611)
30/31: sure, but to get to "consequences" and "leverage" you have to first agree that failing to run on this play and coughing up a base in the 3rd inning is a significant infraction, and I just don't agree.


How is giving up a base for either laziness or, in this instance, preening not a significant infraction? Running is in his job description. There is no reason this should ever happen.

Yeah, but a consequence to whom?

He's still getting paid for the game... and now he's got the afternoon off!


I assume this is at least partially sarcasm, but do you really think players are happy to get pulled out of games and sit the bench? Have you ever been around athletes?
   42. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:15 PM (#5872613)
I assume this is at least partially sarcasm, but do you really think players are happy to get pulled out of games and sit the bench? Have you ever been around athletes?


I imagine the chronic lollygaggers with guaranteed big ticket contracts don't mind it :-)
   43. Greg Pope Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:18 PM (#5872615)
do you really think players are happy to get pulled out of games and sit the bench? Have you ever been around athletes?

Not to mention that even if Acuna doesn't think it's a big deal, his teammates, fans, and sportswriters do. So he's going to get asked about it. And if he does it again, he'll get crucified by the fans and sportswriters. Now, maybe he wouldn't care about that either, but it's clearly more than just a day off.
   44. JAHV Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:23 PM (#5872618)
I imagine the chronic lollygaggers with guaranteed big ticket contracts don't mind it :-)


They certainly can't get good, long looks at their home runs sitting on the bench. And bat flips during batting practice just aren't quite the same.
   45. jmurph Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:23 PM (#5872619)
How is giving up a base for either laziness or, in this instance, preening not a significant infraction?

This is probably impossible to quantify but I'd guess players stupidly run themselves into outs more often than they do this, and while it's presumably happened, I can't recall someone getting yanked midgame for that offense.
   46. SoSH U at work Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:29 PM (#5872621)
This is probably impossible to quantify but I'd guess players stupidly run themselves into outs more often than they do this, and while it's presumably happened, I can't recall someone getting yanked midgame for that offense.


Other than maybe Wade Boggs, virtually everyone has made a bad baserunning decision that resulted in an extra out. If it's a habit, then it needs to be addressed, if possible.

Loafing out of the box can be a habit, one that Snitker should rightfully want to nip in the bud.

   47. PreservedFish Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:32 PM (#5872622)
This is probably impossible to quantify but I'd guess players stupidly run themselves into outs more often than they do this, and while it's presumably happened, I can't recall someone getting yanked midgame for that offense.


Is the difference between trying and not trying really immaterial?
   48. . Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:35 PM (#5872624)
This is probably impossible to quantify but I'd guess players stupidly run themselves into outs more often than they do this, and while it's presumably happened, I can't recall someone getting yanked midgame for that offense.


It's not the stupidity that's being "punished," it's the self-centered act that has no possibility of a countervailing payoff. Stupid has to do with making a poor judgment decision about costs and benefits; there's no judgment decision of any kind in posing, nothing that can be gained for the team in posing.
   49. Rusty Priske Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:37 PM (#5872627)
Of course, seriously. It's really not even close. Posing is nothing but self-centered. Nothing else is involved.


Well, you are right that the two things aren't even close.

Not trying hard when playing is absolutely inexcusable.

Enjoying what you do and celebrating when you accomplish something is a positive trait.

Your priorities are very screwed up.
   50. jmurph Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:42 PM (#5872629)
Is the difference between trying and not trying really immaterial?

Wasn't trying? He thought he hit a homerun! He was wrong! It's a boneheaded play, as is stupidly running into an out on the bases, but the latter is obviously more costly. I'll take what Acuna did any day over a guy like Nyjer Morgan racking up caught stealing numbers and getting thrown out on the basepaths being overly aggressive.
   51. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:45 PM (#5872633)
Wasn't trying? He thought he hit a homerun! He was wrong! It's a boneheaded play, as is stupidly running into an out on the bases, but the latter is obviously more costly. I'll take what Acuna did any day over a guy like Nyjer Morgan racking up caught stealing numbers and getting thrown out on the basepaths being overly aggressive.

Gee, it's not like one of these is completely preventable with a tiny modicum of effort, while the other requires complex calculations of the fielder's position, your position, the strength of his are, your jump, etc.
   52. SoSH U at work Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:50 PM (#5872636)
Gee, it's not like one of these is completely preventable with a tiny modicum of effort, while the other requires complex calculations of the fielder's position, your position, the strength of his are, your jump, etc.


On top of that, if a guy is routinely making bad baserunning reads, teams should absolutely try to address that. But it's a skill thing (or lack of it). If you're lucky, you can address it. OTOH, the guy might just be Jorge Posada and you have to live with it until he's no longer overcoming it elsewhere.

This play is strictly a bad habit, one that should be able to be addressed.
   53. flournoy Posted: August 19, 2019 at 02:50 PM (#5872637)
if [Fried] thinks the ball has a chance of being caught, he has to stay close to 2B. Once the ball lands safely, there are zero outs in the inning, and thus percentages would be not to take a chance of getting thrown out at home.


Correct. Also, no third base coach will send a pitcher home with no outs if there's a chance of a play at the plate where the pitcher might get hurt.
   54. bunyon Posted: August 19, 2019 at 03:11 PM (#5872642)
You're drunk, Zonk. Go home.
   55. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 03:20 PM (#5872651)
You're drunk, Zonk. Go home.


I'm just "running it out" like everyone wants.... hustling on even the meh arguments lest someone think I'm dogging it on the trifles and demand I get pulled from the thread!
   56. SandyRiver Posted: August 19, 2019 at 03:46 PM (#5872659)
Fried is actually quite fast and is sometimes used as a pinch-runner, but as a pitcher, he has very little experience running the bases.

I think your break down is incorrect, though; if he thinks the ball has a chance of being caught, he has to stay close to 2B. Once the ball lands safely, there are zero outs in the inning, and thus percentages would be not to take a chance of getting thrown out at home. Acuna, if he is running from contact, has no risk of running as far and as fast as he can, as if the ball lands, Fried is on 3rsd at least.

Had not realized he was a pitcher. (AL fan - no excuse) That changes the calculus significantly. However, even an inexperienced runner could see that the outfielders were back by the wall over 200' from 2nd, and if Fried was halfway (I'll back off the 2/3 due to: pitcher) even prime Jesse Barfield couldn't catch/throw fast and hard enough to double him up. And as another already noted and I agree, you don't send your pitcher toward the next base with none out unless he can get there safely without sliding.
   57. bfan Posted: August 19, 2019 at 04:03 PM (#5872666)
Had not realized he was a pitcher. (AL fan - no excuse) That changes the calculus significantly. However, even an inexperienced runner could see that the outfielders were back by the wall over 200' from 2nd, and if Fried was halfway (I'll back off the 2/3 due to: pitcher) even prime Jesse Barfield couldn't catch/throw fast and hard enough to double him up. And as another already noted and I agree, you don't send your pitcher toward the next base with none out unless he can get there safely without sliding.


To add to the fact pattern, here, if Acuna just runs normally for his double, there are no outs, runners at second and third, and Albies; Freeman; and Donaldson coming to the plate. The third base coaches calculus has got to be to go easy on Fried and just let him walk in when at least 2 of the next 3 guys hit a homer.
   58. Colin Posted: August 19, 2019 at 04:41 PM (#5872680)
Do we still have this conversation if that ball barely sneaks into the front row?


I think we saw that in the same game. Bellinger didn't seem to be hustling out of the box on his homer, and it was so just-barely over the wall that Acuna got it in his glove briefly before it came back out.
   59. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 19, 2019 at 04:45 PM (#5872682)
Had not realized he was a pitcher. (AL fan - no excuse) That changes the calculus significantly. However, even an inexperienced runner could see that the outfielders were back by the wall over 200' from 2nd, and if Fried was halfway (I'll back off the 2/3 due to: pitcher) even prime Jesse Barfield couldn't catch/throw fast and hard enough to double him up. And as another already noted and I agree, you don't send your pitcher toward the next base with none out unless he can get there safely without sliding.

But wouldn't the pitcher be tagging with no outs? If you're unlikely to send him home, there's no reason to not tag.
   60. Howie Menckel Posted: August 19, 2019 at 05:17 PM (#5872695)
Enjoying what you do and celebrating when you accomplish something is a positive trait.

what did he accomplish, exactly, that was worth celebrating?
   61. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: August 19, 2019 at 05:39 PM (#5872699)
what did he accomplish, exactly, that was worth celebrating?
And what, exactly, did he do that actually fits the definition of celebrating?
   62. bfan Posted: August 19, 2019 at 05:49 PM (#5872701)
But wouldn't the pitcher be tagging with no outs? If you're unlikely to send him home, there's no reason to not tag.


we sure do put a lot into a matter involving a ball that is in the air for not that long a period and a split-second decision, once it hits the wall. No one said there was some overriding decision that he would not score if the ball was not caught; the ball happened to carom right to another outfielder off the brick wall; without that carom right to the fielder, the ball goes to the left or right of the other OF, or it dies at the wall, I assume Fried gets sent home, as the calculus by the 3b coach is a lot easier, as he sees the balling rolling free in the outfield or sitting at the base of the wall and he knows where the runner is and how fast he is. At that point, it may no longer be risky to send Fried; he is home easily.

The only Brave who did anything wrong here is Acuna; the 3B coach and Fried both made correct choices.
   63. Walt Davis Posted: August 19, 2019 at 06:09 PM (#5872708)
Too long and tedious a thread to read (but please read me! :-), so apologies if this obvious thing has been said but ... from a manager's perspective, I think you have to ask yourself two questions. (1) Is this consistent with past behavior ... or at least not obviously inconsistent? If Acuna regularly hustles, takes extra bases, makes smart plays (e.g. Javy Baez) then this instance was most likely just a brain fart or a silly one-off. (2) Is the player already sufficiently embarrassed about it? This is essentially evidence that #1 holds.

Based on his post-game reaction, Acuna (and pretty much every other player who has done this) understands they messed up as soon as they realize the ball isn't going out. So you don't need to pull him to make that point. Maybe the manager thinks that although the player knows he messed up, he doesn't understand how serious this mistake is -- so pulling him will get that across. Or (relative to #1) the manager thinks this is the sort of player for which this behavior may become a bad habit -- so pulling him is a form of shock therapy.

I suspect this one fell more into the category where pulling him wasn't necessary -- Acuna knew he screwed up, making up for it might have been the motivation behind the steal attempt. As a manager I might have instead pulled him aside and said "you know you messed up not running that ball out and I know you hustle so that was just a one-time dumb move. What annoys me more is letting your self-frustration get to you and attempting that stupid steal. (if it was stupid) That won't be the last time you mess up in a game, don't let a mistake get you off your game again."
   64. JAHV Posted: August 19, 2019 at 06:14 PM (#5872711)
Enjoying what you do and celebrating when you accomplish something is a positive trait.


In the right context, yes, i.e. with your teammates once the play is over.

Acuna's play is far worse than a guy who gets thrown out trying to stretch plays. The latter is an error in judgment, which might be fixable with coaching, but also might just be who that player is. Acuna's error is one that no one should make, ever. Because while he also made a judgment error, it was a completely unnecessary judgment that could have been avoided with effort, something every major league baseball player is capable of giving and is expected to give.

Nyjer Morgan might not have had the physical or mental tools necessary to make the judgments that needed to be made in order to be an effective baserunner. Acuna definitely had the physical and mental tools to be able to reach second base on this play. He chose not to use them.
   65. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 19, 2019 at 08:06 PM (#5872735)
Walt gets it.
   66. bigglou115 is not an Illuminati agent Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:17 PM (#5872741)
I think the CS is important here as well. I was watching the game and the pitcher was hyper aware of Acuna with a runner at 3rd and less than 2 outs with Ozzie up. He threw over 2-3 times and Acuna ran on the first pitch and was thrown out on a pseudo pitchout. It looked like he'd made his mind up to go no matter what to make up for his error.

So to my mind it was really two back to back lapses in judgment. Acuna has the speed and got a good jump, if he'd taken a second to clear his head and pick a good time to go that base was there for him.

As to pulling him, I'm of the frame of mind that do what you want, just accept the consequences if you get it wrong. He took 6 steps at a walk and sat the bat down halfway down the line. Don't know how that's not showing off.
   67. Cleveland (need new name) fan Posted: August 19, 2019 at 09:26 PM (#5872742)
Looks like a big nothing to me. It had a high moonshot trajectory. It looked like either it would be caught or it would be a home run since the RF was at the wall as the ball arrived. His jump was just a little to low. It just happened to hit in the 3 foot area on the wall that was too high for the RF to reach, but wasn't a home run. Anywhere but in those three feet, it was a catch or over the fence. So basically, Acuna hit a high flyball that had very high odds on either out or a home run. In both circumstances, batters often don't sprint to first. He rolled snake eyes and it hit the very tiny space where he looked like a fool.

The way the runner on second played the ball is a good indication that it was likely to be a catch, so he needed to tag. If he was even halfway, he would have scored from a ball bouncing off the wall. Its not like the RF was facing the wall and got a good bounce so that he could make a strong throw to the plate. He jumped at the wall and the ball bounced off of it and he needed to chase it down. There was no way a fast baserunner, even a pitcher, wouldn't have scored from second unless he was standing on it getting ready to tag.
   68. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:19 PM (#5872762)
Well I think Acuna is a slacker and the Braves should trade him to the Red Sox for a pittance.
   69. bigglou115 is not an Illuminati agent Posted: August 19, 2019 at 10:39 PM (#5872764)
Looks like a big nothing to me. It had a high moonshot trajectory. It looked like either it would be caught or it would be a home run since the RF was at the wall as the ball arrived. His jump was just a little to low. It just happened to hit in the 3 foot area on the wall that was too high for the RF to reach, but wasn't a home run. Anywhere but in those three feet, it was a catch or over the fence. So basically, Acuna hit a high flyball that had very high odds on either out or a home run. In both circumstances, batters often don't sprint to first. He rolled snake eyes and it hit the very tiny space where he looked like a fool.


And if he'd just jogged it out I think that would be fair. They replayed it half a dozen times last night though, it was pretty clear he thought it was gone and was admiring it.
   70. JAHV Posted: August 19, 2019 at 11:07 PM (#5872767)
Also, for those of you defending Acuna (or thinking he deserves no punishment), what's the downside of running? Even if there was only three feet where that ball could hit where he would have to run, why not run? Heck, even if he's just going at 85 - 90%, he's still safe at second. There is no reason for him to dog it out of the box if there's even a remote chance that it could land in the field of play.
   71. Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens Posted: August 19, 2019 at 11:38 PM (#5872773)
Based on his post-game reaction, Acuna (and pretty much every other player who has done this) understands they messed up as soon as they realize the ball isn't going out. So you don't need to pull him to make that point.
Since his postgame reaction was also post-benching, it tells you basically nothing about whether or not he needed the benching.

Armchair managing a decision that amounts to a minor disciplinary judgment call for a mental error by the "boss" who is actually sharing a dugout with a young player...I mean get yourself worked up that it's "dumb" if you want but I'll take his read and best guess on what was appropriate over any of the "knights of the keyboard" defending Acuna here.
   72. SandyRiver Posted: August 20, 2019 at 08:45 AM (#5872799)
But wouldn't the pitcher be tagging with no outs? If you're unlikely to send him home, there's no reason to not tag.

Mentioned tagging up in #29. And thanks to #67 I learned that the ball was hit to RF, so tagging was the right play - a reasonably fast player would not even draw a throw on a deep fly to right.
   73. bfan Posted: August 20, 2019 at 08:59 AM (#5872801)
Looks like a big nothing to me. It had a high moonshot trajectory. It looked like either it would be caught or it would be a home run since the RF was at the wall as the ball arrived. His jump was just a little to low. It just happened to hit in the 3 foot area on the wall that was too high for the RF to reach, but wasn't a home run. Anywhere but in those three feet, it was a catch or over the fence. So basically, Acuna hit a high flyball that had very high odds on either out or a home run. In both circumstances, batters often don't sprint to first. He rolled snake eyes and it hit the very tiny space where he looked like a fool.

The way the runner on second played the ball is a good indication that it was likely to be a catch, so he needed to tag. If he was even halfway, he would have scored from a ball bouncing off the wall. Its not like the RF was facing the wall and got a good bounce so that he could make a strong throw to the plate. He jumped at the wall and the ball bounced off of it and he needed to chase it down. There was no way a fast baserunner, even a pitcher, wouldn't have scored from second unless he was standing on it getting ready to tag.


Welcome to the internet; we have gone from being down on Acuna for not hustling out of the box on what would have been a double had he run, to absolving him and blaming the runner on second base for not...doing something other than what he did.

Give it time; Ozzie Albies is going to be blamed for something he didn't do or say in the on-deck circle, to better assist Acuna on his judgment on the fly ball.
   74. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 20, 2019 at 09:08 AM (#5872802)
Ahem. I already blamed Albies for popping up with a runner at 3B and nobody out/1 out after the CS.
   75. jmurph Posted: August 20, 2019 at 09:11 AM (#5872805)
Welcome to the internet; we have gone from being down on Acuna for not hustling out of the box on what would have been a double had he run, to absolving him and blaming the runner on second base for not...doing something other than what he did.

Give it time; Ozzie Albies is going to be blamed for something he didn't do or say in the on-deck circle, to better assist Acuna on his judgment on the fly ball.

Yes this is a completely rational description of this thread. Totally.
   76. . Posted: August 20, 2019 at 09:40 AM (#5872820)
Give it time; Ozzie Albies is going to be blamed for something he didn't do or say in the on-deck circle, to better assist Acuna on his judgment on the fly ball.


Actually, in time there's a better than decent chance it will still wind up as racist or white privileged. There are some precincts wherein it almost certainly already has.
   77. Cleveland (need new name) fan Posted: August 20, 2019 at 11:15 AM (#5872859)
Welcome to the internet; we have gone from being down on Acuna for not hustling out of the box on what would have been a double had he run, to absolving him and blaming the runner on second base for not...doing something other than what he did.


You misunderstood my point about the runner on second. He did the right thing in tagging since it was extremely likely that the RF would catch the ball if it stayed in the park. I mentioned this just to reinforce the point that it was a probably a catch or a home run. He would have been halfway and scored if there was any reasonable chance that it was going to be a regular hit.
   78. bfan Posted: August 20, 2019 at 01:07 PM (#5872902)

Actually, in time there's a better than decent chance it will still wind up as racist or white privileged. There are some precincts wherein it almost certainly already has.


That is very funny.
   79. Swoboda is freedom Posted: August 20, 2019 at 01:36 PM (#5872912)
Well I think Acuna is a slacker and the Braves should trade him to the Red Sox for a pittance.


This is a good idea, except they should punish their divisional rival the Mets, by trading him there.
   80. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 20, 2019 at 01:53 PM (#5872920)
Those brick walls at Wrigley that he could crash into playing CF seem like they would make for a very offense appropriate punishment, too.
   81. Lassus Posted: August 20, 2019 at 02:23 PM (#5872931)
The tool who constantly says people bring up race unnecessarily is the one who has repeatedly tried to bring up race in the thread.
   82. Howie Menckel Posted: August 20, 2019 at 02:45 PM (#5872940)
25. Howie Menckel Posted: August 19, 2019 at 12:37 PM (#5872569)
what if Acuna stood at home plate admiring - sorry, celebrating - his "home run" and then got thrown out at first base, instead of only getting a single off the wall (and then erasing himself anyway with a CS)?

..........

would have been easy for someone to post, "ok, THAT would be a bridge too far, and I'd bench him for that."

but the posters who like to downplay every stupid baseball move don't ever seem eager to draw a line in the sand.

who knows, after all? in another year or two, maybe some player will do that - waving to his fans at the plate as the throw comes in to first base for the out. and if curmudgeons complain, it will be too tempting for others to wave it off as "Meh."
   83. SoSH U at work Posted: August 20, 2019 at 02:58 PM (#5872944)
The tool who constantly says people bring up race unnecessarily is the one who has repeatedly tried to bring up race in the thread.


You said race.

   84. Zonk Will Have the Chicken Kiev Posted: August 20, 2019 at 03:14 PM (#5872946)
I'm more annoyed by whoever it is that keeps spamming threads with

[ Ignored Comment ]
   85. . Posted: August 20, 2019 at 04:04 PM (#5872963)
would have been easy for someone to post, "ok, THAT would be a bridge too far, and I'd bench him for that."

but the posters who like to downplay every stupid baseball move don't ever seem eager to draw a line in the sand.

who knows, after all? in another year or two, maybe some player will do that - waving to his fans at the plate as the throw comes in to first base for the out. and if curmudgeons complain, it will be too tempting for others to wave it off as "Meh."


Good point, Howie, but it's even easier to show how silly they are. If it's ok to "admire" and "celebrate" a homerun, why wouldn't it then also be ok to "admire" and "celebrate" a single?? Or a double??
   86. Hot Wheeling American Posted: August 20, 2019 at 04:11 PM (#5872965)
That is very funny.

The right is starting to get better at comedy and it's making lefties nervous.
   87. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: August 20, 2019 at 04:50 PM (#5872977)
[ Ignored Comment ]

:)
   88. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: August 20, 2019 at 05:13 PM (#5872981)
The right is starting to get better at comedy and it's making lefties nervous.
So true. These days, some of it is even intentional.
   89. My name is RMc and I feel extremely affected Posted: August 20, 2019 at 09:15 PM (#5873043)
Hmpf! Back in my day, we didn't admire home runs! We never got to hit home runs, cuz the fences were three miles away and the ball was made out of talcum powder! And even if we could hit the ball, the basepaths were filled with landmines and crazed weasels! Besides, we were too busy to play ball, working on the farm 23 hours a day and dying of pleurisy at the age of nine! Why, if I could get my hands on this Acuna punk, I'd...do nothing, cuz I died of pleurisy back in ought-four! Kids today! Hmpf, I say...!
   90. Howie Menckel Posted: August 20, 2019 at 09:19 PM (#5873045)
you'd have loved Central Park BBTF softball recently. I don't think any HR were hit (though a young guy stopped at 3rd twice on bombs - either to refuel, remove the piano off his back, or show pity).
   91. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: August 21, 2019 at 09:59 AM (#5873131)
Besides, we were too busy to play ball, working on the farm 23 hours a day and dying of pleurisy at the age of nine!


Luxury! We worked down the mill 29 hours a day, 12 days a week, had to walk down barefoot in the blizzards and that was before 17 hours of school before we could go home, and our house was nothing but a hole in the middle o' road...

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
BDC
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (September 2019)
(190 - 8:20pm, Sep 22)
Last: Omineca Greg

NewsblogOT Soccer Thread - A New Season is Upon Baldrick
(872 - 8:14pm, Sep 22)
Last: AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for the weekend of September 21-22, 2019
(233 - 7:57pm, Sep 22)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

Gonfalon CubsApproaching the Finish Line
(86 - 7:44pm, Sep 22)
Last: Walks Clog Up the Bases

NewsblogCubs are living to regret Craig Kimbrel's $43 million contract
(24 - 7:40pm, Sep 22)
Last: JJ1986

NewsblogAubrey Huff, Seth McClung feuding on Twitter
(6 - 6:55pm, Sep 22)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogKC Royals’ Danny Duffy talks bullying, anxiety, depression | The Kansas City Star
(46 - 6:53pm, Sep 22)
Last: Omineca Greg

NewsblogJoe West ejects Yankees’ Boone amid clash with rookie ump
(18 - 6:53pm, Sep 22)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogOT - August/September 2019 College Football thread
(423 - 6:00pm, Sep 22)
Last: it's hittin' 53450n.

NewsblogHow did World Series champions who missed the subsequent postseason respond the year after?
(8 - 5:15pm, Sep 22)
Last: QLE

NewsblogHall of Fame manager Tony La Russa remaining with Red Sox
(7 - 3:50pm, Sep 22)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogPadres fire manager Andy Green; communication issues cited
(6 - 1:34pm, Sep 22)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogAlonso slugs 50th, now 2 away from Judge's mark
(6 - 11:57am, Sep 22)
Last: Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens

NewsblogWhat’s the best WEIRD baseball video game ever?
(13 - 2:39am, Sep 22)
Last: winnipegwhip

NewsblogA’s Jesús Luzardo forced to adapt as a kid. Now his stuff is ‘almost unfair’ - SFChronicle.com
(9 - 11:49pm, Sep 21)
Last: Howie Menckel

Page rendered in 0.7166 seconds
46 querie(s) executed