Either if you did or if you did not, here’s what I noticed. In no particular order of importance:
At his current pace, Aaron Boone is going to use Adam Ottavino for over 100 appearances and about 115 innings. Someone needs to tell Aaron who John Habyan and Scott Proctor are.
Aaron Boone, part 2: He has some serious issues with lineup construction. Greg Bird has no business being in the top 5 in the batting order, Gleyber Torres has no business being in the bottom 5 in the order. Also, batting three lefties in a row is a mid to late inning dream come true for the opposing manager, FYI.
Last night I saw the worst baserunning (non) play I’ve ever seen on any level. Ever. Yes, seriously. No, not Gary Sanchez getting picked off third with the bases loaded and nobody out. No, not Torres forgetting to “re-touch” second base on his return to first. Those indecorums aside, they were child’s play for what was coming. Let’s re-set the stage: Runners on first and third, down by a run. The Orioles gift a passed ball that goes 2/3 of the way to the dugout that (should) allow the tying run to score and the go-ahead run to move into scoring position. Except neither Torres, who was on third, nor D.J. LeMahieu who was on first, advanced. The replay showed Torres with a very small primary lead, and no secondary or walking lead at all. Flat footed, five feet from the base when the passed ball occurred.
Now I’m going to do what apparently Phil Nevin cannot. “Dear Gleyber: You need to expect a passed ball in that situation. You are the tying run, this is crucial. Get a good lead, get a good hop or two toward the plate as the pitch is delivered and if you see the ball get more than 12 feet from the catcher, GO. If there is no passed ball, then return to third quickly, in fair territory.” And D.J., for future reference, when in that situation, I’m going to need you to WAKE THE F UP. Torres not advancing was bad – LeMahieu staying on first was inexcusable.
Reminder: Winning baseball games is about your team’s ability to get runners on base and hit with power, while simultaneously limiting the opponent’s ability to do so. That’s it. If “manufacturing” or “creating” runs, or “small ball” worked than teams that utilized those strategies would score more runs than teams with high OBP and SLG. They do not. There are 100 years of data to support this. Ball go far, team go far.
Part 2: How you score runs does not matter, how many runs you score matters. I will never understand the simpletons over at Simpleton Summer Camp that continually obsess over how many runs are scored as the result of home runs, and how many are scored as the result of…whatever. It. Does. Not. Matter. It’s how many, not how.
It was an ugly, yet oddly entertaining game last night. Did I miss something? If so, let me know by commenting here or getting to me on my Facebook page (link on the right).
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