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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Rays grab data card shaken loose from Kirk’s wrist, deny Blue Jays’ request to return it

Kevin Kiermaier grabbed a Toronto Blue Jays data card shaken loose from Alejandro Kirk’s wristband during a play at the plate and the Tampa Bay Rays later laughed off a request to return the proprietary sheet.

The incident during the bottom of the sixth inning in Monday’s 6-4 Rays win added another element of intrigue to the rivalry between the AL East clubs.

Several Blue Jays declined to discuss the matter while Rays general manager Erik Neander deferred comment, saying he had just learned of Kiermaier’s actions and was headed to the clubhouse to better understand what happened.

Rays manager Kevin Cash later came out of the clubhouse to chat with Blue Jays counterpart Charlie Montoyo.

Asked about the matter, captured on video, Kiermaier said that he didn’t realize it was the Blue Jays’ card when he picked it up. “I never even looked at it, I’ll say that,” he said. “But at the same time, I’m not going to drop it or hand it back.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 21, 2021 at 09:38 PM | 104 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: blue jays, rays

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   1. Howie Menckel Posted: September 21, 2021 at 10:17 PM (#6040820)
Kiermaier and two teammates combined to deliver the data card to the clubhouse.

as per local custom, there was no applause from Rays fans.
   2. 57i66135 is available to babysit, for a price Posted: September 21, 2021 at 10:22 PM (#6040822)
i don't generally approve of headhunting, but i'm gonna go ahead and say this is cause for headhunting.
   3. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 21, 2021 at 11:01 PM (#6040835)
You drop your cheat sheet on the field, and you expect the other team to give it back? Here's an idea: Leave that **** in the dugout where it belongs.
   4. Best Dressed Chicken in Town Posted: September 22, 2021 at 12:15 AM (#6040852)
100% AGREED

Too ####### bad. Preparation should be done off-field. I'm sick of watching players cram on their crib sheets in the middle of games. You leave it on the field, oh well.
   5. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: September 22, 2021 at 01:42 AM (#6040854)
but i'm gonna go ahead and say this is cause for headhunting.


You're a moron. There is nothing that transpires on a baseball diamond that can justify throwing a baseball 100mph at someone's head.
   6. The_Ex Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:05 AM (#6040862)
"Deny Blue Jays request to return it"

Charlie Montoyo tells us that Kevin Cash apologized to him before the game about SpyGate, and now it’s “agua under the bridge”. #Bluejays



If Cash is apologizing, why don't they give it back? If you are not giving it back then why apologize?
   7. Nasty Nate Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:09 AM (#6040864)
You don't give it back in this situation.
   8. mathesond Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:12 AM (#6040866)
The important thing is that kids are learning the value of good sportsmanship (sportpersonship?).
   9. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:14 AM (#6040867)
At this point, even if they gave it back I’m sure they’d have made a few dozen copies first.
   10. CStallion Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:26 AM (#6040870)
Jays fan here... while i don't blame the Rays for taking/keeping the card...

1. I had no idea Kiermaier can be so smug. Beaning him would be way over the top but I will enjoy his next fastball in the ribs or critical error.

2. Would be hilarious if the Jays dropped a fake card to mess with them. Watching the replay it seems unlikely though.

3. I'm really hoping the card says something like so-and-so (especially if it's KK) can't hit and just throw him anything. They will be p1ssed but too embarrassed to vent in public.


   11. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:30 AM (#6040872)
You drop your cheat sheet on the field, and you expect the other team to give it back? Here's an idea: Leave that **** in the dugout where it belongs.


Seconded or thirded or fifthed or whatevered. And I completely concur with #4, I'd rather see players not allowed to take that stuff onto the field.
   12. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:51 AM (#6040873)
   13. winnipegwhip Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:26 AM (#6040875)
If it was appropriate to return information which was left behind in 1863 we might be tearing down statues of Grant and Lincoln these days.
   14. Ron J Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:27 AM (#6040876)
Why is there no way I can +1 number 12?
   15. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:37 AM (#6040878)
Why is there no way I can +1 number 12?


It's 13.
   16. KronicFatigue Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:46 AM (#6040881)
I came here when the story first broke and there were zero comments. I was so curious as to whether I'd be in agreement with the board and...I'm not. I agree that that these sheets shouldn't make their way onto the field in the first place, but that doesn't justify theft. This is theft. This is the bluejays property (physical and intellectual) just stolen b/c it...was dropped. Is there any other work place where dropping something relinquishes the rights of possession to the competition?

A Greenbay Packer lost a necklace in the endzone on a TD. The necklace had his dead father's ashes in it. Luckily the grounds crew found it at 1:30 AM after combing through every blade of grass. Could the opponent have just taken it and said "sorry, don't bring it on the field"
   17. villageidiom Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:54 AM (#6040884)
This is incredibly absurd. If a player's helmet fell off when sliding into a base, no opponent would - or should - take the player's helmet away. If a fielder's glove got knocked off in a collision, his opponent isn't stealing the glove and smuggling it into the clubhouse. When a batter puts a ball in play and drops his bat, the opposing team doesn't grab it and run away with it. I mean, come on.
   18. bunyon Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:56 AM (#6040885)
I'm with 16. I'd be fine if MLB banned these. But they don't. If a guy loses a batting glove in the middle of a play, can the other team take it? Players' gloves sometimes come off, I guess we can just take those. Hell, batters drop their bat on every struck ball. Just take that to the clubhouse.

If you don't like cheat sheets, fine. Argue for banning them. But if they're legal, and they are, they're the property of the owner.



PS I also imagined this being a camera data disk, like a 8GB card or something. Wondered what the hell a player was doing carrying that around.
   19. bunyon Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:56 AM (#6040886)
Goddammit, VI

What beverage would you like?
   20. bunyon Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:58 AM (#6040888)
Actually, now that it's out there, I think taking a glove or hat is the right response. They play this afternoon. When Kiermeir bats, the Jays should take his bat if he makes contact. The precedent has been set.
   21. Nasty Nate Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:58 AM (#6040889)
I came here when the story first broke and there were zero comments. I was so curious as to whether I'd be in agreement with the board and...I'm not. I agree that that these sheets shouldn't make their way onto the field in the first place, but that doesn't justify theft. This is theft. This is the bluejays property (physical and intellectual) just stolen b/c it...was dropped. Is there any other work place where dropping something relinquishes the rights of possession to the competition?
Interesting perspective. But I think the "workplace" question is distracting. This is on an athletic field, and the property was related to the competition. But you may be right, it wouldn't be cool for an opposing team to pocket a dropped glove/headband/mouthguard/cleat etc.
   22. Itchy Row Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:42 AM (#6040910)
Has anyone consulted the unwritten rulebook on this?
   23. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:52 AM (#6040916)
I think there's a distinction to be made between taking equipment necessary for playing the game and taking another teams intelligence. If the Rays had accidentally left one of their cards in the outfield grass after the game, would it be wrong for the Jays to look at it? I think not.

This seems to me to be on the same moral plane as stealing signs, which everyone seems to think is fine as long as excessive technology isn't employed in doing so. I mean, this is literally stealing signs.

   24. KronicFatigue Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:55 AM (#6040917)
Interesting perspective. But I think the "workplace" question is distracting. This is on an athletic field, and the property was related to the competition. But you may be right, it wouldn't be cool for an opposing team to pocket a dropped glove/headband/mouthguard/cleat etc.


After I hit submit, I realized I was overthinking it, and the easier analogy was the cleats/bat/helmet thing that was then immediately brought up!
   25. SoSH U at work Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:59 AM (#6040921)
I'm with Tom. I don't think the helmet/cap analogy works really well, because they're not using those specifically to beat you, as they are with these sheets. Catchers hide signs and switch them up when they worry the other team might be trying to figure them out. They take steps to protect that competitive-advantage information, and if the other team accesses that information through above-board means, that's on the team that was careless with the information. This would seem to fall in the latter category.

Give me back that secret information we've compiled to beat you doesn't strike me as a reasonable demand.
   26. KronicFatigue Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:05 AM (#6040925)
Hitters are most certainly trying to use their bats to beat the opposition. Even more so when they are "lucky" bats.
   27. SoSH U at work Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:16 AM (#6040930)
I said hat/cap. And, of course, the bat is required equipment. The cheat sheets not so much.

Again, I think these are far more analogous to catcher signs. If the other team figures it out, it's on you to fix the issue, not them.
   28. Nasty Nate Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:22 AM (#6040933)
Again, I think these are far more analogous to catcher signs. If the other team figures it out, it's on you to fix the issue, not them.
But there is the question of what to do with the actual physical item. That doesn't apply to catcher signs.
   29. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:27 AM (#6040934)
But there is the question of what to do with the actual physical item. That doesn't apply to catcher signs.

Somebody take a picture of it quick, and give it back.
   30. The_Ex Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:27 AM (#6040935)
I wonder how useful those cards are. Lets say the card says throw Kiermeier a change up when you are ahead in the count. Does Kiermeier not figure this out after one at bat, or two maybe? Then if you follow the card on Monday, do you not have to change it for Tuesday as the hitter knows whats coming?

How much flexibility does the catcher/pitcher have? Lets say the pitcher's change up is not great that day but he has a good fastball. Can he just throw the FB even if the card says change up?

The original article says the Jays were pissed that the information got into the Rays hands. What in there is so valuable?
   31. The_Ex Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:28 AM (#6040936)
Heyman is now reporting that the Rays did give it back.....but as others have noted they could have photocopied it.
   32. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:28 AM (#6040937)
Kiermeier deserves ten beanings in the head. So do those supporting him.
   33. SoSH U at work Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:43 AM (#6040941)
But there is the question of what to do with the actual physical item. That doesn't apply to catcher signs.


I don't think it changes anything. Even with the Rays giving back the physical item, the Jays are going to assume they have the information stored, so a change may be necessary. Same as with the signs. If you think the other team has figured them out, you change them.

   34. michaelplank has knowledgeable eyes Posted: September 22, 2021 at 12:14 PM (#6040951)
Lawyer here, but not an expert on every single detail of professional ethics...
Every now and then, an adverse party will inadvertently give you a peek at a document. Someone will forget a paper on a desk, a secretary will include something in a mailing that shouldn't be there, someone will hit the wrong fax number or e-mail address.

Without worrying too much about the precise rules and reasons, generally, you gotta give that $hit back, pronto. Destroy all copies, seal it up, write a letter saying you didn't know what it was, when you looked at it and realized it was theirs, you averted your eyes and immediately forgot everything you had just seen. Even mundane stuff, seemingly harmless, you gotta give it back.

Now, despite the popular perception of lawyers, these rules are probably more restrictive than in many other professions. (They're also largely based on self-policing, so there's that.) Whether they should apply to big time sports is an interesting question.
   35. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 12:27 PM (#6040960)
When a batter puts a ball in play and drops his bat, the opposing team doesn't grab it and run away with it. I mean, come on.


Sometimes the batter's teammate tries to steal it, though.

   36. KronicFatigue Posted: September 22, 2021 at 12:40 PM (#6040965)
I wonder how useful those cards are.


Agreed. Every team knows their own players' weaknesses. They are all using the same data and the actual analysis of the data probably is all very similar. The differences are on the fringes, and as you point out, nothing is ever set in stone. Even if "changeup after a curveball" is a player's weakness, game theory would have you mixing it up anyway.

That being said, even if the value is minimal, you don't want the opposition getting the fruits of your labor.

I can't find the video now, but an NBA player's shoe came off and his teammate tried to toss it to him. An opposing player swatted the shoe in mid air out of bounds, delaying the shoe retrieval. The shoe-less player had a dumbfounded look as it happened, clearly thinking it was against the unwritten rules of the game.

I don't watch hockey, but I feel like I've seen players routinely swiping away opposing players hockey sticks that have fallen to the ice.

   37. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 22, 2021 at 01:01 PM (#6040972)
And, of course, the bat is required equipment. The cheat sheets not so much.
The question isn’t use, but ownership. Neither Kiermaier nor the Rays have any rights to the object, it belongs to the Blue Jays. If a player breaks his 20 lb. gold necklace sliding into a base, a fielder can’t scoop it up and keep it, even if the runner doesn’t notice he’s lost his bling. AFAIK, “finders keepers, losers weepers” isn’t part of the written or unwritten rules.

That said, if Kiermaier had been able to discreetly pick up the card without attracting any notice and have the clubhouse attendant make a quick copy before it was returned, that might be within the spirit of the game.
   38. Mayor Blomberg Posted: September 22, 2021 at 01:03 PM (#6040974)
I feel like I've seen players routinely swiping away opposing players hockey sticks that have fallen to the ice.


Absolutely, but not taking them to the bench and refusing to give them back.
   39. pikepredator Posted: September 22, 2021 at 01:36 PM (#6040978)
has this ever happened in football with the wrist-mounted playbook rolodexes the QBs wear? If I was an opposing player I would likely walk very slowly towards the other bench and memorize everything I could before handing it back over, knowing I might well get hit a little late/extra-hard in an upcoming series or two.

As to this incident, my first instinct was "haha that's funny, too bad for the Jays." I find myself almost swayed by the arguments that this is property . . . but it still feels different. I keep trying to come up with something else that would be an exception to the "personal property/game equipment" category and falling short. So I'm basically creating an exception to fit what feels right to me. If you bring a cheat sheet onto the field and drop it . . . tough. Study it in the dugout, then go out on the field.
   40. TJ Posted: September 22, 2021 at 02:07 PM (#6040985)
Based on this conversation, I am beginning to wonder how many posters ever actually played baseball at a competitive level…

That card was not a piece of equipment, like a bat or a helmet. It was not someone’s personal property, like a gold necklace. It was a part of game strategy, no different than a catcher’s or third base coach’s signs. You as a player and team are responsible for the security of your strategy, all aspects of it. If you cannot protect your strategy, you can’t complain when the opposition takes advantage of your failure. It’s part of the game when done on the field. (Which is different than using off-field tech like the Astros and other teams were doing.) Sure a manager is going to try and get the card back, and just as surely they must expect the opposing manager to say, “No Dice”.

If I had dropped the card like Kirk did, most every coach I ever had would have A. Tried to get it back, B. Dropped the matter when told no, and C. Had me running stairs for hours the next day as a “reminder” to be more protective of the cards in the future…
   41. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: September 22, 2021 at 02:08 PM (#6040986)
Tony Larussa said that the unwritten rules allow the other team to keep something like this. In fact, Larussa said, that's what he did during his first year as White Sox manager, when somebody from the other team dropped their abacus.
   42. Nasty Nate Posted: September 22, 2021 at 02:18 PM (#6040988)
Based on this conversation, I am beginning to wonder how many posters ever actually played baseball at a competitive level…
At what level of baseball do players have these things? Upper minors and above? Serious question.
   43. VCar Posted: September 22, 2021 at 02:33 PM (#6040992)
has this ever happened in football with the wrist-mounted playbook rolodexes the QBs wear?


if I remember right, this happened in the past 2-3 years and the refs made the defensive player give it back asap. anyone else remember for sure?
   44. TJ Posted: September 22, 2021 at 02:42 PM (#6040997)
if I remember right, this happened in the past 2-3 years and the refs made the defensive player give it back asap. anyone else remember for sure?


This post raises a good point. If the umpires had agreed with the Jays and told Tampa to hand over the card and Tampa refused, then the Jays would have a much stronger argument. Since the umpires did not, then the on-field adjudicators ruled that it was within the boundaries of the game not to return the card.

That said, I fully expect Manfred to issue a ruling based solely on what will impact MLBs bottom line. Which means that teams like the Yankees can keep anything they find and that the Diamondbacks will have to hand over anything their opposition requests including the phone numbers of and Dbacks hot girlfriends…
   45. villageidiom Posted: September 22, 2021 at 02:57 PM (#6041001)
That card was not a piece of equipment, like a bat or a helmet.
Sure it is. Plainly it is. It's so obvious that it's a piece of equipment that it feels strange even having to say that it is to someone older than a toddler.

There's the card, which is equipment by any rational definition. And then there's the information on the card, which is like a catcher's signs. If a Rays player sees the information on the card (or wherever else it might be visible), so be it. But the card itself is not the Rays' equipment and they have no claim to it. Hell, I have no problem with Kiermaier picking up the card and immediately beginning to study it, if he finds it on the ground. Walking away with it is another matter.
Based on this conversation, I am beginning to wonder how many posters ever actually played baseball at a competitive level…
Professionally? Almost nobody. Competitively? Many, myself included. But that's beside the point, because you don't need to have played baseball competitively to know definitions of terms. But if you've played baseball competitively you know what a player would want to do with the card, which is to steal it. And if that's why you bring up playing baseball competitively, what you're really revealing about your argument is that you're starting with what a player would want to do, and then trying to derive a justification for it, which led you to define equipment to exclude something that is definitely equipment.
   46. 57i66135 is available to babysit, for a price Posted: September 22, 2021 at 03:08 PM (#6041009)
You're a moron. There is nothing that transpires on a baseball diamond that can justify throwing a baseball 100mph at someone's head.

actually, there are numerous situations where headhunting is justifiable:

1: someone threw at you first.
2: someone broke your shortstop's ankle by sliding hard and late into 2nd base.
3: someone trucks your MVP, all-world catcher, breaking his leg and ending his season.
4: someone kicks your 38 year old catcher in the head, giving him a concussion and ending his career.
5: someone takes half a second too long to get out of the battersbox after hitting a homerun.


now, this situation isn't really like any of those; it's more of a "russia invades crimea"/salami tactics kind of thing. how important is this information to the rays? does the blue jays theft and hoarding of it rise to a level disrespect and immorality that you're willing to go to war over it. from my point of view, this crosses those lines and i'd have been willing to go to war over it...unless toronto surrendered, which is what happened.
I have no problem with Kiermaier picking up the card and immediately beginning to study it, if he finds it on the ground.

sure, he's within his rights to do that.

but then, the appropriate response by the rays is to paralyze him from the neck down and make sure noone ever ####### thinks of doing that again.
   47. bunyon Posted: September 22, 2021 at 03:18 PM (#6041017)
I think the standard should be that the card should be given back as soon as it's requested. I also think taking it is funny. And that if he can take it without anyone knowing, good for him.

I don't think anyone should throw a baseball at him.

I do think the next time his glove/helmet/shoe comes off, the person that doesn't immediately take it and run it to the clubhouse is the biggest criminal in history.
   48. Karl from NY Posted: September 22, 2021 at 03:22 PM (#6041018)
The hockey stick thing involves safety - the best thing to do with it is get it away from where the razor sharp skates are. If that player leaves the ice without getting it back, an official will pick it up if they are nearby and have a chance.

Anyway, I'm swayed by the arguments here - you wouldn't keep a glove or bat or anything else, so yeah it's a dick move to keep this. But yes, of course you'd take pictures and copy it first.
   49. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: September 22, 2021 at 03:44 PM (#6041035)
That card was not a piece of equipment, like a bat or a helmet.

Sure it is. Plainly it is. It's so obvious that it's a piece of equipment that it feels strange even having to say that it is to someone older than a toddler.

There's the card, which is equipment by any rational definition.


This is a huge overbid, if not flatly incorrect. Sports equipment derive their utility from their physical properties - the hardness of the batting helmet, the shape of the bat, etc etc. Not information which they contain. You could obviate the need for the card by communicating its information in some other way. There is no way to replicate the role of actual equipment with something that is not tangible.

The much better argument that the card should be returned is its ownership, like [37] says.
   50. Hombre Brotani Posted: September 22, 2021 at 03:44 PM (#6041036)
Y'all act like vigilante justice hasn't been the baseball way since the invention of baseball. Yeah, it's not awesome and we can harrumph about it all we like, but every single person who plays or watches the games know that the last thing teams do is blame themselves for things like this.
   51. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 22, 2021 at 03:55 PM (#6041043)
Anyway, I'm swayed by the arguments here - you wouldn't keep a glove or bat or anything else, so yeah it's a dick move to keep this.


I don't think this analogy holds up. If you take somebody's glove, you're not doing anything to help your team win; you're just delaying the game until they can get another glove. In other words, you're just being a dick.

Keeping their information card, on the other hand, lends you a competitive advantage. Grabbing a copy of it can help your team win, both now and into the future. That's very different from stealing someone's bat.
   52. michaelplank has knowledgeable eyes Posted: September 22, 2021 at 04:00 PM (#6041046)
#45 has me convinced, based on the distinction between the card as equipment/property and the information on it. Good stuff. Thanks.
   53. bunyon Posted: September 22, 2021 at 04:14 PM (#6041057)
Oh, I think Kiermeyer is absolutely likely to get plunked. I just don't think he should.
   54. bunyon Posted: September 22, 2021 at 04:24 PM (#6041063)
Well, hard to say if it was the card or not, but the Rays are kicking the Jays ass. 6-0 still in the bottom of the 3rd.
   55. Zach Posted: September 22, 2021 at 05:27 PM (#6041089)
Based on this conversation, I am beginning to wonder how many posters ever actually played baseball at a competitive level…

Are you kidding me? The card has the team's gameplan on it. In every sport I've ever played, the response would be "give that back right now or fight me".
   56. The Gary DiSarcina Fan Club (JAHV) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 05:52 PM (#6041096)
At what level of baseball do players have these things? Upper minors and above? Serious question.


These have come into use as early as Little League. We have teams in the 11-12 year-old division who use them. Now, I'm sure their use is limited compared to how MLB players use them - I've only seen them used by catchers and pitchers for pitch signs. I haven't personally seen them used by fielders to position themselves for certain batters. However, I might have seen them used during the Little League World Series for that purpose, but I can't recall.
   57. Bhaakon Posted: September 22, 2021 at 06:13 PM (#6041102)
Are you kidding me? The card has the team's gameplan on it. In every sport I've ever played, the response would be "give that back right now or fight me".


Maybe, but the game plan/play book/etc is far more vital in most other team sports. An NFL team with no practice time or play book would lose to a well prepared college team. That's just not the case in baseball. The Yankees could take a week off, roll out a completely random lineup, and still trounce a AA team 9 times in 10. Information theft and borderline dirty gamesmanship has always been a part of the professional baseball metagame on the playing field, in large part because the utility of that data is so marginal. Off the field is a different story entirely--even if it's just in the dugout or bullpen, hence the Astro's debacle--but on the field the history has very clearly been that almost anything goes. So if a player is dumb enough to bring a scouting report with him onto the field of play, then it's free game. And no, typical social or business ethics do not always apply on a competitive field. Sports have their own niche set of ethics, often specific to each game and each league, that do have a sort of de facto (if not de jure) legal recognition. Which is why it is so remarkably rare for professional athletes to be charged in connection with on-field altercations, even if their behavior would be patently illegal in any other context.

And I don't see the equipment argument at all. Stealing gear only delays play. It doesn't provide or abrogate an advantage. And, granted it's been a while since this was a thing, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't at all uncommon for teams to surreptitiously scoop up dropped bats to check for cork back when people still believed that helped.
   58. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 06:14 PM (#6041103)
There's the card, which is equipment by any rational definition.

Not by the rational (IMO) definition of "Is there any mention of it in the official rule book?" and I would guess there isn't, ergo it's not necessary and there are no rules governing its use or even mentioning it in passing.
   59. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 06:34 PM (#6041105)

I think the comparison to bats/helmets is not very apt. Players drop these items as part of the normal course of the game, and it wouldn't function if players had to constantly worry about the other team running off with their equipment.

A cheat sheet is different. (a) this is literally the first time I have ever heard of a player dropping one, and (b) the game can be played without it.

That being said, I agree with the notion that it belongs to the Jays and Kiermaier shouldn't have taken it. If the Jays had somehow left one lying around after the game or even between innings, that would be a bit different.
   60. O Tempura, O Morays ('Spos) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 06:35 PM (#6041107)
Kiermaier plunked. Jays lose. Everyone equally happy.
   61. Tin Angel Posted: September 22, 2021 at 06:57 PM (#6041108)
I haven't personally seen them used by fielders to position themselves for certain batters.


I'm guessing some extremely cruel shifts could be used in Little League if so inclined.
   62. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 22, 2021 at 07:13 PM (#6041110)
I'm guessing some extremely cruel shifts could be used in Little League if so inclined.


I’ve been coaching youth baseball for over a decade. Just about any kid you’d do any kind of shift on isn’t worth it because those kids are just going to strike out anyway.

With one exception. A few years ago my 10 year old travel team was in a state semi-final. We were in the bottom of the 8th (yes it’s a 6 inning game) with the bases loaded and two outs. The kid who came up had three hits, all he dumped on the right field line behind the first baseman. You bet we shifted then. Regular infield, center fielder, right fielder and Kevin, about 20 feet behind the first baseman. The kid blooped one right to Kevin to end the inning.

We then scored ten in the top of the ninth to win it.
   63. The Gary DiSarcina Fan Club (JAHV) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 07:26 PM (#6041114)
I'm guessing some extremely cruel shifts could be used in Little League if so inclined.


There were definitely some shifts employed during the LLWS, but they weren't common, and they were probably ordered from the dugout rather than by scouting reports on wristcards. Again, though, I could be wrong. I have a vague memory of seeing a centerfielder look at a wristband at some point, but I could be misremembering. Or he might have had one because he was a pitcher.

I admit that I've thought about shifting in youth baseball before, but it only makes sense for a travel team or an All Star team where everyone understands the concept and has enough baseball acumen to get themselves to the proper position if the ball is hit. On a normal team, if you move the kids that far out of position, they're going to be lost unless the ball is hit right at them. And there isn't enough practice time to devote to something like that when fundamentals are still being developed.
   64. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: September 22, 2021 at 07:27 PM (#6041115)
actually, there are numerous situations where headhunting is justifiable:

1: someone threw at you first.
2: someone broke your shortstop's ankle by sliding hard and late into 2nd base.
3: someone trucks your MVP, all-world catcher, breaking his leg and ending his season.
4: someone kicks your 38 year old catcher in the head, giving him a concussion and ending his career.
5: someone takes half a second too long to get out of the battersbox after hitting a homerun.


We will have to agree to disagree as I don't think any of those things justifies throwing at someone's head. Funnily enough, your #2 and #3 brought about major rule changes to prevent those things from occurring in the future, so there was some positive response.

As for #5, c'mon man, if don't like the hitter lingering like a fart in a lift, then don't throw cheese down the main street.
As for #1, it's just childish and how sh*t escalates in the first place. Be the bigger person and move on. What are you like 9 years old?

   65. 57i66135 is available to babysit, for a price Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:28 PM (#6041130)
We will have to agree to disagree as I don't think any of those things justifies throwing at someone's head

yeah, this is just one of those cases where i'm willing to be the #######.
As for #1, it's just childish and how sh*t escalates in the first place. Be the bigger person and move on. What are you like 9 years old?
as someone who is willing to advocate for headhunting, it would be unethical for me not to include it as a justifiable reason. mutually assured destruction is a strong and reasonable deterrent.
Funnily enough, your #2 and #3 brought about major rule changes to prevent those things from occurring in the future, so there was some positive response.
that's nice and all, but it doesn't help the victim's team in the moment.
As for #5, c'mon man, if don't like the hitter lingering like a fart in a lift, then don't throw cheese down the main street.
#5 was only included as a calibration test for sarcasm detectors.


i should probably also note that when i say headhunting is "justifiable" in some of these situations, i don't mean to imply that it should be the first response to every situation where it may be justified.
   66. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:33 PM (#6041132)
yeah, this is just one of those cases where i'm willing to be the #######.


Eh, fair enough. Different strokes and all that.
   67. Jay Z Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:49 PM (#6041135)
Throwing at someone on the field is only permissible in case of regicide. Reggie Jackson tries to kill the queen, he's goin' down.

As far as the data card goes, I'm pulling the ol' switcheroo.
   68. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 22, 2021 at 08:52 PM (#6041136)
Throwing at someone on the field is only permissible in case of regicide. Reggie Jackson tries to kill the queen, he's goin' down.


Wouldn’t regicide be someone trying to kill Reggie Jackson?
   69. Ron J Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:18 PM (#6041144)
And while I disagree with Stiggles that throwing at Kiermaier should happen, I was pretty confident it would. And it did.
   70. Nasty Nate Posted: September 22, 2021 at 09:56 PM (#6041152)
Is there any video of the card-grabbing?
   71. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:16 PM (#6041161)
Maybe, but the game plan/play book/etc is far more vital in most other team sports. An NFL team with no practice time or play book would lose to a well prepared college team.

Which is an absurdity. Football would be far more interesting if the QBs had to call the plays, and the defense had to react. Same 11 guys on the field on each platoon. The next fan I meet who roots for the film analysis crew will be the first. The degree to which coaches can plan/influence the game makes it less of a sport. As some wit said, Football combines the worst aspects of American life: violence and committee meetings.
   72. SoSH U at work Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:30 PM (#6041166)
Is there any video of the card-grabbing?


Yes, and that's likely the only way the Jays knew Kiermaier had it. They didn't notice it at the time, as far as you can tell.
   73. villageidiom Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:54 PM (#6041173)
Sports equipment derive their utility from their physical properties - the hardness of the batting helmet, the shape of the bat, etc etc. Not information which they contain.
A stopwatch is sports equipment. That little clicker umpires used to use to track balls, strikes, and outs is equipment. The lineup cards provided to the umpire and the opposing manager before the game are equipment. All of them derive their utility from the information contained therein.

Too many people here are trying to create custom definitions of "equipment" in order to exclude these cards, and every attempt has been dumb and transparently so. For a MLB game equipment is, plainly, stuff people are equipped with to aid in their participation in the game. The inscription of information on the equipment doesn't make it cease to be equipment, any more than putting a number on the back of the shirt doesn't make it cease to be a uniform.
   74. Hank Gillette Posted: September 22, 2021 at 10:57 PM (#6041176)
Kiermeier deserves ten beanings in the head. So do those supporting him.


You may have anger issues.
   75. Hank Gillette Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:02 PM (#6041177)
I can't find the video now, but an NBA player's shoe came off and his teammate tried to toss it to him. An opposing player swatted the shoe in mid air out of bounds, delaying the shoe retrieval.


Was it Dikembe Mutombo? Based on those television commercials, he seems to be an #######.
   76. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:17 PM (#6041182)
And no, typical social or business ethics do not always apply on a competitive field.


Business ethics? Businesses have whole divisions devoted to doing to their competitors what Kiermaier tried to do to the Rays.
   77. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:24 PM (#6041183)
Too many people here are trying to create custom definitions of "equipment" in order to exclude these cards, and every attempt has been dumb and transparently so.


And too many people think that if they can define an index card as "equipment," it becomes obvious that Kiermaier had no right to grab it. Which it doesn't.
   78. The Honorable Ardo Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:40 PM (#6041187)
Regarding shifts, I play vintage ball and I've always liked the "old way": three basemen who must stay within a pace or two of their bags, and a shortstop who's a true rover free to play wherever. Way in for a bunt, a 4th OF for a big slug, on the short RF grass for a lefty pull hitter, and so on.
   79. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: September 22, 2021 at 11:59 PM (#6041194)
Stealing gear only delays play. It doesn't provide or abrogate an advantage.
Ssshhh!! Don’t give managers any ideas for when they’re late to get a reliever up.
   80. sotapop Posted: September 23, 2021 at 09:52 AM (#6041224)
Really good discussion here. I'm a Rays fan and even I was like, "Ummmmm, not really cool, Kiermaier" but I couldn't quite get a handle on it.

After all this, I'm thinking, picking it up and reading it, OK. Physically taking off the field, not so OK.

One last thing -- waiting until the game was already lost to plunk Kiermaier was bush league. If you're gonna drill him, then you do it in the first at-bat.
   81. bunyon Posted: September 23, 2021 at 10:11 AM (#6041226)
I saw the beginning of the game yesterday. The Jays pitchers in the first half of the game (and there were several) definitely didn't have the command to plunk anyone on purpose. They were awful.

   82. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: September 23, 2021 at 10:53 AM (#6041230)
Back in the day, I was working on behalf of a client whose company was being sold to another company. After a long day of meetings, I was packing up the conference room and I saw that the other side had left an internal document with their analysis of the transaction. I didn't look at the materials or show them to my client even though I don't think I had any legal obligation not to, and a lot of others in the same situation might have done otherwise. It's questionable how valuable the information would have been anyway, and we negotiated a very good deal for our client without it.

That being said, I don't think the rules/norms of the business world apply on a baseball field. If the Blue Jays leave their notes lying around, and the Rays find them, that's fair game. But that's different from dropping a card right in front of you in the middle of the play and having the other team snatch it up before you notice.
   83. Howie Menckel Posted: September 23, 2021 at 11:09 AM (#6041235)
I'm guessing some extremely cruel shifts could be used in Little League if so inclined.


I gave mentioned before that when I was age 11 or so, my otherwise-completely-sane baseball coach employed a shift on only one player. not the best best player - the worst one. so the OFs all move up to cover first/second/third base, and those fielders move halfway to the plate because this kid couldn't reach the OF with three batted balls all added together for distance.

we all cringed at the time - and to this day. what the hell. (and yes, it did work. but the kid was so slow that even a squib to a normally-placed 3B, for example, likely would have been an out anyway.)


Was it Dikembe Mutombo? Based on those television commercials, he seems to be an #######.


Mutombo is a delight, based on my own personal experience. he was known for his good-natured finger-wagging as an NBA shot blocker, and the commercials are a play on that.
   84. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: September 23, 2021 at 11:22 AM (#6041236)
Too many people here are trying to create custom definitions of "equipment" in order to exclude these cards, and every attempt has been dumb and transparently so. For a MLB game equipment is, plainly, stuff people are equipped with to aid in their participation in the game.


Has it occurred to you that since several reasonable posters have a differing opinion about the meaning of "equipment" that the issue is not as clear-cut as you make it out to be?
   85. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: September 23, 2021 at 11:33 AM (#6041239)
he was known for his good-natured finger-wagging as an NBA shot blocker, and the commercials are a play on that.

Exactly. I love the "Not in my house! Ha! Ha! Ha!" line, and the kid's exploding cereal box is THE BEST! As far as I can tell, "an #######." = "an awesome dude!"
   86. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: September 23, 2021 at 11:39 AM (#6041242)
Businesses have whole divisions devoted to doing to their competitors what Kiermaier tried to do to the Rays.

When I worked for a Jiant Prodigious Megabank Conglomerate, we got weekly talking point updates from our Competitive Intelligence division on how to take any breaking news about our competitors and try to spin it to our advantage in dealing with current or potential clients.
   87. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: September 23, 2021 at 11:44 AM (#6041243)
Mutombo is a delight, based on my own personal experience. he was known for his good-natured finger-wagging as an NBA shot blocker, and the commercials are a play on that.


The league even grandfathered his finger wag in when they pushed for more strict taunting rules. Mutombo was allowed to continue the finger wag, but nobody else could.
   88. jmurph Posted: September 23, 2021 at 01:50 PM (#6041299)
Has it occurred to you that since several reasonable posters have a differing opinion about the meaning of "equipment" that the issue is not as clear-cut as you make it out to be?

Ditto this. There's actually a lot of talk about equipment in the rule book and they aren't mentioned. Which doesn't preclude them from being considered equipment, of course- skimming through, I didn't see batting gloves mentioned, for instance, and I think most people would view them as equipment.

But yeah, clearly not obviously or plainly so. And if the whole point is "but they're obviously equipment!" when they're not obviously so, that's not much of a point.
   89. Hank Gillette Posted: September 23, 2021 at 03:33 PM (#6041324)
Mutombo is a delight, based on my own personal experience. he was known for his good-natured finger-wagging as an NBA shot blocker, and the commercials are a play on that.


Fair enough. Having been on the receiving end of “good-natured” taunting when in school, the charm of it still eludes me.
   90. 57i66135 is available to babysit, for a price Posted: September 23, 2021 at 03:41 PM (#6041327)
Exactly. I love the "Not in my house! Ha! Ha! Ha!" line, and the kid's exploding cereal box is THE BEST! As far as I can tell, "an #######." = "an awesome dude!"
also: extraordinarily kind and generous.
   91. The Duke Posted: September 23, 2021 at 03:50 PM (#6041328)
There’s arguements both ways, but the larger issue is sportsmanship. Play hard but don’t be a dick. I’m sure KK knew right away it wasn’t his. He could have bent over, picked it up and handed it back or just ignored it. But instead he took it. I’ve read some interviews with him in the past and I think he’s a dick so this is in character.

Having said that, nothing ever justifies head hunting. A ball between the shoulder blades seems appropriate
   92. Greg Pope Posted: September 23, 2021 at 04:17 PM (#6041336)
As far as the data card goes, I'm pulling the ol' switcheroo.

That would be interesting.
   93. bunyon Posted: September 23, 2021 at 05:18 PM (#6041347)
Hank@89: Yeah, I get that and mostly agree. But, with Mutumbo, it definitely seems that his taunting was reserved for other NBA players. Taunting guys in a game between peers could easily be the sign of a bully but it could also just be competition. Punching up or sideways against equals who are also punching is okay in my book. Most school stuff isn't going to fall into that boat.

If he did any of his actions in the commercials spoofing his on court behavior, he should be in jail. But that's the joke.

And exploding cereal boxes are cool.
   94. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: September 23, 2021 at 05:29 PM (#6041349)

I assumed #75 was a joke. How anyone could come away from the GEICO commercial thinking "this guy's an #######" rather than "this guy is funny and doesn't take himself too seriously" is beyond me.
   95. 57i66135 is available to babysit, for a price Posted: September 23, 2021 at 05:38 PM (#6041351)
Having said that, nothing ever justifies head hunting. A ball between the shoulder blades seems appropriate

if you're not willing to live with the consequences of missing high, you shouldn't be throwing at anyone above the waist. period.
   96. Hombre Brotani Posted: September 23, 2021 at 06:47 PM (#6041368)
Someone should "accidentally" drop a scouting report on his mom.
   97. KronicFatigue Posted: September 23, 2021 at 08:08 PM (#6041379)
I'm usually don't care about celebrities, but I was starstruck being around Dikembe this summer. I happened to be vacationing at same hotel as him, and his whole extended family was with him celebrating his 55 birthday.

From what I could gather from my many elevator rides and continental breakfasts, he and his family are a delight.
   98. Hank Gillette Posted: September 24, 2021 at 05:11 AM (#6041427)
Hank@89: Yeah, I get that and mostly agree. But, with Mutumbo, it definitely seems that his taunting was reserved for other NBA players. Taunting guys in a game between peers could easily be the sign of a bully but it could also just be competition. Punching up or sideways against equals who are also punching is okay in my book. Most school stuff isn't going to fall into that boat.

Well, I was familiar with Mutumbo, but just from clips. I’m curious about the players he wagged his finger at: did they enjoy it? Wasn’t having their shot blocked enough humiliation? How did he react when a player successfully dunked in his face? Would he have enjoyed it if they had wagged their fingers in his face?

If he did any of his actions in the commercials spoofing his on-court behavior, he should be in jail. But that's the joke.

That’s what irritated me about the commercials. It’s one thing to say “not in my house” on the basketball court, but the idea of trespassing and saying that to random strangers did not strike me as being funny at all. Maybe I am humor-impaired, but I think I have a great sense of humor when bullying is not involved. I’ve never found that funny and never will.

The thing is, bullies always claim that their bullying is harmless and just “good-natured fun”, but they are lying. There is an underlying hostility there. Mutumbo may be the one in a million exception, but since I will never meet him, it doesn’t matter.
   99. Hank Gillette Posted: September 24, 2021 at 05:20 AM (#6041428)
I assumed #75 was a joke. How anyone could come away from the GEICO commercial thinking "this guy's an #######" rather than "this guy is funny and doesn't take himself too seriously" is beyond me.
It was kind of a joke, but with some underlying seriousness to it as well.

Not everyone’s sense of humor is the same. I admit mine is colored by my experiences with bullies as a kid.
   100. Lassus Posted: September 24, 2021 at 06:42 AM (#6041430)
I know I'm super, super late, but how is collecting data cheating? ("cheat sheet")
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