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Baserunning Newsbeat

Wednesday, June 09, 2021

‘Sorry you had to see that’—How baserunning has become an embarrassing problem in Major League Baseball

The Cubs’ Kris Bryant is one of the game’s best baserunners. When asked about baserunning in the majors, he tried to suppress a laugh.

“It is not talked about enough,” he said. “It’s gotten a little lazy. Baserunning is only about effort. But we do have some highlight baserunning that picks up the slack for others who don’t take it seriously.”

Buck Showalter managed in the big leagues for 20 years. No one loves the game more than he does, and no one wants to see it played properly more than he does.

“Baserunning, oh my gosh, I wouldn’t know where to start,” he said. “I do a couple of Yankee games a month (as a broadcaster for YES Network). I see two or three baserunning mistakes [per game]. Baserunning is the ultimate team play. If you don’t run the bases well, you are selfish. We have lost the shame of the strikeout in the game. We are losing the shame of bad baserunning.”

It is not necessarily the fault of the players. The industry, infatuated with home runs being the primary way to score runs in today’s game, has de-emphasized baserunning. It hasn’t taught it very well. It doesn’t pay for great baserunning. It doesn’t penalize bad baserunning. The industry has decided that the risk of getting thrown out trying to advance 90 feet is far greater than the reward for hitting a three-run home run. That was one of Hall of Fame manager Earl Weaver’s philosophies 50 years ago.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 09, 2021 at 11:49 PM | 75 comment(s)
  Beats: baserunning

 

 

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