Should Eddie Rosario Be Benched for Not Hustling?
Image courtesy of © David Berding-USA TODAY SportsMinnesota’s offense was sputtering against the White Sox as they used most of their bullpen to preserve a one-run lead. Rosario stepped up to the plate in the eighth inning with two outs already recorded. He smashed a ball to the right-field wall, but took some time admiring it in the box. The end result turned out to be what many consider a baseball sin… being thrown out at third for the final out of an inning.
In a year where home runs are flying out at a record pace, Rosario might have thought he had hit another home run. There’s also a chance that he didn’t think the center fielder would get over to help out on the play. Any of these excuses could apply to the play as it unfolded, but it still doesn’t make up for not hustling out of the box.
White Sox analyst Steve Stone called out Rosario after the play. “Eddie Rosario did not hustle out of the box and it’s a good thing for the Sox," Stone began. "He poses. If he's hustling, there's no play at third base."
Stone went on to say: "I mean, he's been doing this the whole series. And apparently the Twins are fine with it. This could cost them a ballgame. In the grand scheme of things, it might not keep them out of the division title, but you’ve got to hustle out of the box whether you think it’s a home run or not."
The Twins will still likely win the American League Central in the days ahead, but a close game against an inferior opponent isn’t exactly the time to let down your guard. Rosario is a leader on this team, and he needs show that on and off the field.
Twins Manager Rocco Baldelli didn’t seem too concerned about the play after the game. Minnesota might not have other options in the outfield either with Max Kepler continuing to be banged up. Rosario is back in the line-up on Thursday night, but maybe it’s time for Baldelli to send a message.
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