Tuesday, January 3, 2017

The Incoherent Ramblings of an Angry Baseball Fan Pt. 2 (Unwritten Rules)

Guess who's back after an almost two week hiatus?? That's right, your favorite baseball blogger under the age of 25 that still lives at home with his parents and who may or may not have doubled his body mass in the last two weeks, itsa me, Big Tones. I had to take a little break with the holidays going on and everything so that I could focus solely on eating my body weight in Italian food and drinking until I couldn't see.
Yeah something like that

Fuck you Kermit
But its a new year now, and a new me, my resolution is to talk to you guys more, all 20 of you that read this. Ok, now back to the topic at hand. Im back with part 2 of my Incoherent Rambling series and I got a lot of shit to get off my chest. Sticking with the theme of the popularity of baseball (or lack thereof) in America I want to talk about baseball's "Unwritten Rules". Nobody really knows exactly what these "Unwritten Rules" are, mainly because they aren't written down anywhere. These rules come from an era where men were men, and they treated each other with respect. You wouldn't be flashy because it was disrespectful to your fellow man and the only people who were flashy back then were homosexuals. Can't have everyone thinking your a gay now can you.

In all seriousness though, these "rules" are alienating younger fans who don't fully understand them. Even myself who claims to be a hardcore baseball fan don't fully get them. Why is it ok for Lebron to do whatever this stupid fucking thing is?

Or for Gronk to spike the ball to the moon

Or even for Ronaldo to do this?

But Bautista can't even do a bat flip after hitting potentially the biggest home run of his career without dealing with severe backlash

Come on guy's even soccer has better celebrations than us. As a red blooded American who thoroughly enjoys a nice ribeye and more than a couple Budweisers I cannot allow this to go on any longer. Now join me as I combat some of my least favorite "unwritten rules" and continue my quest to make baseball fun again.

Right there with ya Bryce

Unwritten Rule #1: Don't Bunt to break up a No-Hitter

This one is a big no-no among baseball "purists". The idea behind this rule is that if you can't break up the no-hitter with a "traditional" base hit then you deserve to be no-hit. So by that logic if the pitcher is throwing a perfect game you shouldn't take ball 4 because its a cheap way to get on base. Listen, I consider myself fairly competitive person in general, so I'm all for winning anyway you can by any means necessary. If that means you have to lay down a bunt to get any kind of rally going then you do that. When I was a kid and played baseball I was compared to the likes of Mo Vaughn, at least in terms of physique and athleticism.
Being that I was a man child I generally had more power than the kids I was facing. Occasionally they would back the infield up when I would get up to bat. So what would I do if I was having a bit of a cold streak? I'd drop a bunt down the third base line just to get on base to help my team. If you're down 1-0 and the other pitcher is throwing a no-hitter and you drop a bunt down for a base hit, that throws the pitchers mojo off, next thing you know you could get a rally going just by reaching base. At the end of the day the point of playing the game is to win the game, so don't give me this bullshit playing the game the "right way". If you won then you played the game right.

Unwritten Rule #2: Dont walk across the pitchers mound

This rule was relatively unknown, at least by me,  until a few years ago. After returning to 1st from 3rd on a foul ball Arod ran across the mound sparking outrage from Dallas Braden and the rest of the Athletics at the time. This is one of many instances of fake tough guys trying to "police" the game. Now, as a Yankee fan I have a tumultuous relationship with Arod. And he is known for doing stupid things from time to time such as slapping the ball out of someones glove
Or yelling "Mine" while rounding the bases on a pop out and starting a fight with another group of fake tough guys
Or the time he did this
All that being said in this situation I 100% back him up. Geometrically speaking the shortest distance from 3rd to 1st is through the middle of the field by the pitchers mound. And from all reports it didn't seem like Arod was trying to intimidate Braden or talk any shit or anything of that sort. Arod was just trying to get back to 1st and Braden absolutely lost his shit. And notice how he waited to lose his shit until after the inning was over and everybody was walking back to the dugout. Bro, if it really bothered you that much do something about it then and there, don't yell from the opposite side of the field when there's like 40 people between the two of you to break anything up.
Sweet Hair Bruh

Unwritten Rule 3: Don't show up the other guy
This "Unwritten Rule" is the one that you probably hear about the most, and is probably my most hated. The general consensus is that you don't want to show the other guy up by celebrating right in his grill piece. FUUUCK THAAT! Baseball is one of the few sports where the outcome is largely based on one on one battles. It's one of the sports where you're in control of what happens when you get on the field (generally speaking). When you get up to the plate, you're in control of your at-bat. If you strike out its because you swung and missed or didn't swing at a strike. When you step on that mound its up to you to make the right pitches to strike the guy out. Thats what drew me towards baseball, thats why I love it. Thats why I loved to pitch, I loved that one on one, me vs you, mano y mano mentality. That being said, if you have an ounce of competitiveness in your bones you should want to celebrate a big strike out, or a big hit. I know, I know, your probably sitting there like "hey, Big Tones, I thought in baseball you're not supposed to show the other guy up?". And to that I say again FUUUCK THAAT! If you don't want me to celebrate then stop me from beating you in the first place. You don't want me to bat flip? Don't let me hit a homerun. Don't want me to fist pump after a strike out? Don't let me strike you out. Plain and simple.

The Bat Flip/Trot around the bases
This kind of falls under the same rule of "not showing up the other guy" but this has been a hot topic of discussion in recent years so I felt that it needed to be address individually. One of the first memorable incidents with a bat flip becoming a problem was in 2001 when then rookie Jimmy Rollins hit a 2 run shot off of Cardinals reliever Steve Kline. Rollins flipped his bat and after the game Kline said to reporters "That's fucking little league shit" "If you're going to flip the bat, I'm going to flip your helmet next time. You're a rookie, you respect this game for a while...there's a code. He should know better than that." I don't man, just sounds like you're butt hurt to me bruh. I'll paraphrase myself again, if you don't want me to bat flip don't let me hit a home run you bitch. 

There have been other bat flipping incidents but the most recent and most publicized was the Jose Bautista bat flip. 
That was a 3-run HR in the bottom of the 7th of game 5 of the ALDS to take the lead. The homerun would end up being the deciding blow in the series. How in the FUCK do you not celebrate that. Thats literally what kids dream about growing up, hitting a deciding homerun in the playoffs infront of the home crowd, add the fact that it was an absolute moonshot. I mean just look at the crowds reaction behind him, its a no doubter, they know it, joey bats knows it, everybody knows it. If that doesn't get you juiced up and itching to take some hacks in the cage then I don't want to know you.

Fast forward to spring next year and there is still some butt-hurtness over the incident that leads to this
I actually did respect this move by Odor. It led to one of the more memorable baseball fights since 
Instead of one of those other "pow-wows"


Basically what the whole point of this blog has been is that I wish baseball players would play more with emotion and not by some set of "unwritten rules" that nobody truly even understands. Let loose, celebrate a little when you've done something good, don't get butt hurt about stuff. And lastly, don't play by some made up rules that were most likely written by these fucking guys


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