Sean O'Sullivan is right. The major leagues are no place to work out a new delivery or a new pitch. Omaha or N.W. Arkansas would be much more appropriate.
With a good friend and maybe 2,000 fans I watched Wednesday's afternoon game at the stadium. We were praying -- out loud -- in the bottom of the ninth the brain trust would let Billy Butler swing away, rather than strapping him with a hit & run request or, worse, a sacrifice bunt.
They didn't, and it paid off.
But we were left with sabermagician questions for which I'm sure somebody has a rational, unemotional answer. How often is hit & run profitable? When, and in what circumstances?
Butler had previously been tied in knots by a hit & run request. Anybody in the park could see it was an attempt to prevent Butler from hitting into another doubleplay. Of course, it caused him to hit directly into a doubleplay.
For god's sake just let the big boy hit the ball.
I played lousy myself last night. It's crazy to do this at 62, but, well... I figured out why. I let my temper drive me rather than my legs and hips. I don't like being pushed around and I let the young man who did it know, but I couldn't leave it there. And I paid the price. In addition, I hit one to the fence in BP and another to the fence in my first at bat and I think I just got enamored with the fence rather than that elusive spot about an eighth of an inch below center on the ball.
If you know what I mean.
Then, as I was settling in to sleep, setting the alarm on my cell phone, I noticed a text message. My daughter is the new second grade teacher at the elementary school in her town! Immediately I could hear this conversation:
Erik: Who you got this year?
Willie: Mrs. Morton.
--Loffllin -- almost too proud to be healthy...
Photograph courtesy the Kansas City Star. Could not find a credit line for this wonderful image anywhere on the page. My guess is John Sleezer.