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Front Page: Should the Twins Look to Add to the Bullpen?

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At this time last season all of the offseason talk was about about adding to the bullpen. The only addition, Blake Parker, is no longer o...
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NYT Lists MiLB Teams Targeted For Extinction

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Emily Waldon Tweeted out a link to a New York Times article that lists the 42 minor league teams that have been targeted for extinction b...
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Twins Game Recap (9/18): Twins’ Offense Absent Against Chicago Bullpen Game

After a 12 inning game and the White Sox using a bullpen game, it looked like the Twins’ offense would have some fun at the plate tonight. It was the complete opposite as the offense was no-hit through 5 1/3 innings, and got just three hits total. Despite giving up a lot of leadoff hits, Odorizzi managed to keep the Twins in the game as the Twins dropped the series finale.
Image courtesy of FanGraphs
Box Score
Odorizzi: 5.2 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 9 K, 64.5% strikes (61 of 94 pitches)
Bullpen: 3.1 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K

Home Runs: None
Multi-Hit Games: Rosario (2-4, 2B)

Bottom 3 WPA: Arraez -.111, Wade -.127, Sano -.207

Twins’ offense can’t figure out Chicago bullpen

The Twins’ offense found themselves struggling against one of the worst bullpens in the league. For 5 1/3 innings, four White Sox pitchers threw a no-hitter while allowing three walks. They had a threat in the first after back-to-back walks with one out, but, a Rosario pop out followed by a Sano strikeout ended the inning.

After a leadoff walk in the second, the White Sox bullpen sent down 13 straight batters going into the sixth inning. That’s when the no-hitter came to a close as Polanco ripped a single into center field. After a Cruz walk, Rosario squeaked a ball through the infield to score Polanco.



Cave drew a walk to fill the bases with two outs for pinch-hitter LaMonte Wade Jr. but he grounded out to end the inning.

After picking up their first hits, the Twins’ couldn’t use the momentum and went down 1-2-3 in the seventh. In the eighth, Rosario drilled a ball off the wall in right, but got thrown out trying extend it to a triple. In the ninth, the Twins again went down 1-2-3 to close out the game.

Odorizzi able to minimize damage

Jake Odorizzi was one out away from picking up a quality start, but ran into trouble in the sixth to end his night. Though Odorizzi picked up nine strikeouts tonight, his stuff wasn’t the best. Odorizzi gave up a leadoff hit in four of the six innings he pitched in.

After giving up a leadoff single in the first, he picked up two strikeouts with Castro throwing out Garcia to end the inning. In the second he gave up a leadoff double followed by a Jimenez single to score a run, but Odorizzi picked up another double play and strikeout to get out of the inning.

Odorizzi flew through the next two innings picking up four more strikeouts in back-to-back 1-2-3 innings. Through those four innings, Odorizzi already had seven strikeouts.

Odorizzi found himself in a jam in the fifth inning with runners on first and second with just one out after a pair of singles. Odorizzi took advantage of facing the number eight and nine batters next, picked up another strikeout and was out of the inning with no harm.

After giving up another leadoff hit, Odorizzi got two quick outs and it looked as if he would be able to at least complete six innings. With an 0-2 count to Moncada, he doubled to left-center to drive in the second run. After Jimenez drew a walk, Odorizzi’s night was ended.

Bullpen

Cody Stashak came into the game with two runners on and two outs and threw just three pitches to pick up a huge strikeout on Collins to end the inning. Stashak was also given the seventh inning, and he too gave up a leadoff single. He picked up back-to-back strikeouts to the eight and nine batters and then got Garcia to fly out to end the inning.

Fernando Romero came in for the eighth, and believe it or not, gave up another leadoff hit. He got Abreu to ground out and struck out Moncada before being pulled for Brusdar Graterol. Graterol did his job, and got Jimenez to ground out to keep it a one-run game.

A new inning, another leadoff hit, this time it was a home run to Collins to straight -away center. Graterol followed that up with nine pitches to pick up the last three outs, including a strikeout.

Postgame With Baldelli


Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet
Click here for a review of the number of pitches thrown by each member of the bullpen over the past five days.

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72 Comments

 

Beat me to the link!

 

On the White Sox broadcast, Steve Stone raked him over the coals for it too, and he's right. That lack of hustle coming out of the box is what produced an out instead of a triple.

 

And the line about not seeing the CF coming over is BS. The play is behind him, so he should be picking up his 3B coach to tell him what's going on.

Right on all counts. He pauses to watch it before even getting out of the box, then 3/4 speeds it around 1st, and he only starts going full speed about 1/2 way to 2nd. And Stone is right, he has been doing it the whole series.

Rosario has to tighten his game up.

    • ScrapTheNickname, h2oface and Bandit34 like this

 

Right. For me it wasn't him trying for 3rd ... he could have made it if he hustled out of the box. He also might have made it had it not been a perfect play on the ball and throw to third.

Yup, that was my issue too. I definitely abide by the "never make the last out at 3B" policy (especially in a close game like that), but there were two factors there that kind of override that in this case. One is preventable and the other requires a tip of the cap.

 

I definitely appreciate how well the outfield played and executed that play. Defense played correctly is fun to watch in my opinion. Little things like that are what the Twins need to be better at to beat the Astros and Yankees.

    • SQUIRREL likes this

 

1.) Even if the Clevelanders go 10-0 the rest of the way, the Twins win going 7-3 against the Royals and Tigers. If Cleveland goes 8-2 (still hard given the Nationals will care and the Phillies are a decent team), the Twins need to go 5-5. Its not arrogant, its smart to sit guys who are banged up.

 

2.) The pitching has been bad? No way, they've been pretty solid. Odo and Berrios looked really good. The pen looks to be solid too. They dominated in Cleveland and the guys who have been hit this series have been regression to the mean (May) or not likely to be on the playoff team but pitching because its the 12th (Harper). Perez hasn't even been that bad. Will we be confident in the playoffs with him? No. Is he capable of shutting down a team on a given day? Yeah. Buy some antacids Twins fans.

 

3.) That's harsh on Rosario. After the game, Rosie said he didn't see the CF coming over. That's a split second decision made by a runner coming around second on a play that he can't fully see because he already turned second. Not all CFers come over to right at such a shallow angle on that, its more typical that they would be back at the fence too. The ball came off the wall right back to a guy running the opposite way as the throw. And it still took a perfect throw. Its not ideal to get the third out at third but I think in this situation, it's not that bad of a call. Rosario is an aggressive player and that has helped and hurt the Twins. This one isn't particularly boneheaded - equal parts unlucky and overly aggressive. I don't mind the latter in a game where the Twins needed a bit of a spark after being shut down the first five innings.

 

OK 

I'll play.

 

1. Rest does nothing for you if you don't win the playoff spot. Absolutely nothing. Crazy things happen in the last couple of weeks of the season. Who did Detroit get swept by in 4 games in 2006 that gave the Twins the Central? 62-100 KC. That's who. They still got in as the Wild Card (They still got in and beat the Yankees and Oakland, who trounced the Twins, though) . With Cleveland, Oakland, and Tampa Bay lurking just a couple of games back, the loser of the Central just might not get that chance at redemption. And that is just one of several horror stories that I could pipe in with.

 

2. Our pitchers have been giving up hits like they are going out of style. I am not going to go back and total it up.... tons of baserunners and hits. As far back as the last Detroit series. Regardless of the other points.... giving up hits (against poor hitting teams too) is not a good formula to advancing in the playoffs. That is what I am noticing.

 

3. I repeat. No excuse. No excuses. You can't make the 3rd out at 3rd, ever. Never ever. You can't let yourself make that decision as you round second. Especially late in the game. Especially after you languished in the box looking at your hit. I see you left that part out. Second was just fine here. Sure, getting 3rd, you can score on a wild pitch and you can't do that from 2nd. And I'm not saying you can't take 3rd if it is clearly there to be had and take the triple. But you need to hustle immediately out of the box as a habit. Always. That needs to be ingrained in your behavior and your brain. No matter what. Isn't part of being an agressive player getting your butt out of the box and at full speed down the first baseline? I think it is. That is what agressive players do. No excuse. No excuses.

    • Bandit34 likes this

I agree with the last post totally. I hate making exuses for losses. This is now a 10 game season. We can play with numbers all we want. If the Twins do this or do that..heck they could go 1-9 in this crazy game of baseball. Odds say that won't happen but the name of the game is still win.We haven't been sharp lately. We've won some games but we trail in most all of them.

Resting players as long as the ones who take their place can get the job done is OK. If a guy is truly banged up and not contributing...like Cron or even Kepler...there is no advantage to having them play. Cron apparently can't grip the bat and his AB's are either k's or weak grounders. Kepler's power has vanished due to his injury and he can't swing the bat properly.

 

I also wonder if playing Castro is helping. He has stopped hitting all together. I think a pitcher could accomplish more. Give Astudillo the odd game behind the plate and see if he can accomplish more. Cave is back in the tank too...but Wade and LaMarre probably aren't the answer. Miller can't hit. Twins really do have to rely on the guys who can get it done...like Rosario, Cruz, Polanco and Arraez. Sano will hit a mistake ten miles...but he also is very suseptible to fanning on 3 pitches.

 

Every team has injuries...look at the Yankees. Gotta gut it out and play smart and hard.,...and not make excuses about losing.

    • h2oface and Bandit34 like this

 

They should work on him in the offseason though. If he doesn't hit .350 going forward, he may get pushed out of the infield and into a utility role. His metrics at 2B are below average and pretty awful at SS and 3B. Being able to play a decent LF would help his career longevity. 

 

Of course he could make that a moot point by continuing to hit .350 or developing pop.

 

But agreed that he's not an OF and its because Buxton/Kepler are injured that he's even out there. Jake Cave is not a competent CFer either.

 

Yeah... I'd like to see a major league OF make that play but I believe Rosario has struggled with that same ball multiple times this year.

 

It seems to me that Rosario is perceived as an OF so when he doesn't make the play we don't get the out of position comments, while Arraez is perceived as a 2B and when he doesn't make that play... it is followed by out of position comments.These declarations are too simple in a complicated world.  

 

I fully agree with you that they should continue to work on OF and IF. He's 22 and he can grow any direction you let him.. the team just has to let him. Multi positions is a positive for the team and positive for young Luis Arraez.  

 

If he can play multiple positions we can entertain such thoughts as bringing Schoop or even Dozier back (I'm not saying we should) or letting Nick Gordon win a job (Not saying he will). I'm just saying that it increases our options. The opposite of that is giving him the 2B job with no altervative, living and dying with the results, baring the brunt of a sophomore slump if it happens with no place to turn. I love Arraez... I'm buying his stock but I love him even more with an insurance policy and he can become that insurance policy by playing multiple positions. :)I am sure Rocco has a preference to where he plays... it seems that preference is 2B. But, we should all see by simply watching how injuries and matchups have caused the need for Arraez to play elsewhere and it's working.Yeah, we got Marwin but we can all see that presence of Marwin isn't enough to eliminate the need for flexibility from Arraez or Astudillo. 

 

I'm still not ready to declare any of his current defensive metrics stable for any definition at his young age, due to not enough data to stabilize it. It's a small sample size in total made up of a bunch of smaller sample sizes by playing multiple positions. I don't think we should pay any attention to his UZR at the moment. 

 

Last night's play notwithstanding, he has been making plays in the field at all positions but I will fully admit that he isn't Buxton or Kepler in the OF or the greatest 2B on earth.:)

 

Like you said... let him continue on his current path. 

 

 

    • Only Here in Negative likes this

 

If Castro was amendable to a one year deal for say $8 million, would you take him over Astudillo next year? Or go find a veteran catcher for somewhere between Astudillo and Castro's cost? I lean Astudillo but that leaves you thin if Garver gets hurt.

 

I'm excited about Rortvedt and Jeffers and think they're potentially up late next year or 2021. So its a short term play but one of the few interesting Twins offseason things with position players.

 

It is a weird time in baseball. Pay Castro 8 mil and pay Garver under 1 mil? Just because you can. I hope the new agreement has a better compromise than screwing the young great players for so many years. Astudillo has never been my choice. The performance stats just don't back it up.

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ScrapTheNickname
Sep 19 2019 02:39 PM

 

It definitely should have, but he played little to no outfield in the minors and it's hard to blame the kid. I'm sure it's something they work with him on in the offseason, but I doubt we see him out there too often.

Yes, Arraez had a total of TWO OUTFIELD STARTS throughout his minor league career. I think he has acquitted himself very well, given that.

    • Only Here in Negative likes this
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ScrapTheNickname
Sep 19 2019 02:44 PM

 

1.) Even if the Clevelanders go 10-0 the rest of the way, the Twins win going 7-3 against the Royals and Tigers. If Cleveland goes 8-2 (still hard given the Nationals will care and the Phillies are a decent team), the Twins need to go 5-5. Its not arrogant, its smart to sit guys who are banged up.

 

2.) The pitching has been bad? No way, they've been pretty solid. Odo and Berrios looked really good. The pen looks to be solid too. They dominated in Cleveland and the guys who have been hit this series have been regression to the mean (May) or not likely to be on the playoff team but pitching because its the 12th (Harper). Perez hasn't even been that bad. Will we be confident in the playoffs with him? No. Is he capable of shutting down a team on a given day? Yeah. Buy some antacids Twins fans.

 

3.) That's harsh on Rosario. After the game, Rosie said he didn't see the CF coming over. That's a split second decision made by a runner coming around second on a play that he can't fully see because he already turned second. Not all CFers come over to right at such a shallow angle on that, its more typical that they would be back at the fence too. The ball came off the wall right back to a guy running the opposite way as the throw. And it still took a perfect throw. Its not ideal to get the third out at third but I think in this situation, it's not that bad of a call. Rosario is an aggressive player and that has helped and hurt the Twins. This one isn't particularly boneheaded - equal parts unlucky and overly aggressive. I don't mind the latter in a game where the Twins needed a bit of a spark after being shut down the first five innings.

That's even worse: that he didn't see the center fielder coming over. That's what a center fielder is supposed to do, especially with the overhang! The question is would Rosario have hustled to back up teammate like that?

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ScrapTheNickname
Sep 19 2019 02:46 PM

 

You need to watch the replay. He didn't stand at home for 2-3 seconds admiring his shot. He certainly didn't sprint out of the box (and he should) but he was moving up the line almost immediately.

 

It is true that if he sprints, he ends up on 3rd. But I don't think you need to rip him for it. Rosario seems like the kind of guy where being caught at 3rd is enough to reinforce that lesson anyways. 

But this kind of thing happens habitually. I don't think he learns from his mistakes. Still with the one-handed fancy grabs in the outfield too.

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ScrapTheNickname
Sep 19 2019 02:50 PM

 

Go watch it on MLB.com. He didn't sprint out of the box but he was getting moving right away. This wasn't a 2-3 second stand around. By the time it landed he was around first.

I respectfully disagree. He stood in the box, ran three-quarters speed to first, and didn't kick it into high gear until after he rounded first.

    • h2oface likes this
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KirbyDome89
Sep 19 2019 02:52 PM

 

2.) The pitching has been bad? No way, they've been pretty solid. Odo and Berrios looked really good. The pen looks to be solid too. They dominated in Cleveland and the guys who have been hit this series have been regression to the mean (May) or not likely to be on the playoff team but pitching because its the 12th (Harper). Perez hasn't even been that bad. Will we be confident in the playoffs with him? No. Is he capable of shutting down a team on a given day? Yeah. Buy some antacids Twins fans.

Berrios has had a tough 2nd half no matter which way you spin it. Perez has been "that bad," since June. Unless it's mop up duty I don't want to see him throwing pitches in the postseason. 

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ScrapTheNickname
Sep 19 2019 02:54 PM

 

I counted 7 real-time seconds of admiring.

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KirbyDome89
Sep 19 2019 02:57 PM

 

Jake Odorizzi has gone at least five innings and surrendered no more than three earned runs in nine consecutive starts now.
Here's Twins Pitch from last night's 3-1 loss:

He's averaging a hair over 5 IPs during that stretch so setting the bar at 3 runs isn't terribly impressive. 

 

More encouraging is that he's pitched well against twice against Cleveland and once against Atlanta during that stretch. 

Them losing doesn't mean anything about how they are trying. I really don't get a lot of this thread. No one has taken anything for granted, I'd guess. People have this need to put explanations on everything.... When most things are random.
    • SQUIRREL, Danchat and Only Here in Negative like this

Even if you can walk to third, NEVER even attempt to go to third in that situation. Just don't do it! Period! You're going to score on a hit from second, anyways, with two out. We needed Sano to come up to bat there. Rosario blew it big time. 

Not admiring?



Thanks for posting that Chief. I hadn't seen the play until now. That's inexcusable.
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Only Here in Negative
Sep 20 2019 08:55 AM

 

Beat me to the link!

 

On the White Sox broadcast, Steve Stone raked him over the coals for it too, and he's right. That lack of hustle coming out of the box is what produced an out instead of a triple.

 

And the line about not seeing the CF coming over is BS. The play is behind him, so he should be picking up his 3B coach to tell him what's going on.

 

I was more saying that it wasn't the 2-3 second pause that people were indicating. Announcers are hyperbolic because that's their job. He wasn't moving as fast as he could and should regret that but he wasn't standing at home plate admiring it. He was moving down the line. Not a great play but not anything unusual in today's game.

 

Interesting about checking in on the 3B coach. Its kind of in that weird in between area where he can get an eye on it but not see everything. I wonder what the 3B coach was saying, none of the angles show it.

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Only Here in Negative
Sep 20 2019 09:20 AM

 

That's even worse: that he didn't see the center fielder coming over. That's what a center fielder is supposed to do, especially with the overhang! The question is would Rosario have hustled to back up teammate like that?

 

I could be wrong on this but I thought the CF was remarkably shallow on that. It was a great play, don't get me wrong, but most of the time the CF takes a deeper route back to the wall on that - usually when a RF falls the CF is chasing the ball towards the infield from the fence area. Guys take routes that get them to where the play is.The White Sox CF played it off the wall like it was his ball at Fenway off the Monster. It was a great play but it was atypical of how MLB outfielders handle that play. And yes, Rosario is always backing guys up. I've never heard even the biggest Rosario haters say that he doesn't back up teammates.

 

But this kind of thing happens habitually. I don't think he learns from his mistakes. Still with the one-handed fancy grabs in the outfield too.

 

And Rosario also habitually makes baserunning plays and throws that other guys wouldn't. With the good comes the bad.

 

I was more saying that it wasn't the 2-3 second pause that people were indicating. Announcers are hyperbolic because that's their job. He wasn't moving as fast as he could and should regret that but he wasn't standing at home plate admiring it. He was moving down the line. Not a great play but not anything unusual in today's game.

 

Interesting about checking in on the 3B coach. Its kind of in that weird in between area where he can get an eye on it but not see everything. I wonder what the 3B coach was saying, none of the angles show it.

I get a good "one one-thousand, two one-thousand" count before he starts moving up the line. And then he's jogging to 1B. The ball is in the RF corner, so the play is behind him after he rounds 1B. The link shows him looking over his shoulder several times before rounding 2B never even looking at the 3B coach. I haven't seen an angle that shows the 3B coach, but it's moot since Rosario never looked at him anyway. If you haven't already, Chief posted a link of the play in a post upthread that you should take a look at.

 

Is it a full-on pose? No, it isn't. He certainly lingers at the plate instead of charging out of the box. And then doubles down by jogging to 1B. That's the point people are making. And those two factors are what turned a triple into an out late in a close game.Those two factors alone should have caused him to stop at 2B.

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Only Here in Negative
Sep 20 2019 09:21 AM

 

OK 

I'll play.

 

1. Rest does nothing for you if you don't win the playoff spot. Absolutely nothing. Crazy things happen in the last couple of weeks of the season. Who did Detroit get swept by in 4 games in 2006 that gave the Twins the Central? 62-100 KC. That's who. They still got in as the Wild Card (They still got in and beat the Yankees and Oakland, who trounced the Twins, though) . With Cleveland, Oakland, and Tampa Bay lurking just a couple of games back, the loser of the Central just might not get that chance at redemption. And that is just one of several horror stories that I could pipe in with.

 

2. Our pitchers have been giving up hits like they are going out of style. I am not going to go back and total it up.... tons of baserunners and hits. As far back as the last Detroit series. Regardless of the other points.... giving up hits (against poor hitting teams too) is not a good formula to advancing in the playoffs. That is what I am noticing.

 

2. Don't make claims and then say you're not going to bother to go back and total it up. At that point, you're not adding anything definitive. I went back. The Twins pitchers' WHIP on the year is 1.31. The WHIP since Detroit? 1.31. The WHIP since the first Cleveland series? 1.33. The WHIP since the last Cleveland series? 1.30. Your feeling of the game is not backed up in numbers and is an apt testament to the severe limitations of the eye test.

 

Oh and the average MLB WHIP is 1.337. The Twins are 11th in WHIP. The pitching is not as dire as you make it seem.

 

1. You aptly name that a horror story. Horror stories are scary but they don't really come true. If I told you that one time a kid got killed in a park so my kids don't ever go to parks, you'd think I was insane. Similarly, trotting out one example doesn't suggest a pattern and shouldn't dictate behavior. (And that doesn't even take into consideration that Detroit didn't rest their guys when they stumbled, which perhaps indicates that they should have rested their players down the stretch.)

 

The majority of teams who are up big rest players, particularly those who are banged up. The majority make the playoffs and do fine. Numerous articles have shown that there's no correlation between going on a huge winning streak into the playoffs or backing your way in. Its the team you have that determines that. A healthy Twins lineup is going to be key to advancing. If that means Ryan Lamarre plays five times a week, so be it. This Twins team is not going to collapse and the Clevelanders are not going to get to play Detroit every game. Lean on the depth, its what got us here. They're not sitting guys any more than they have been all year, why mess with what has worked?

 

    • 70charger likes this

 

I could be wrong on this but I thought the CF was remarkably shallow on that. It was a great play, don't get me wrong, but most of the time the CF takes a deeper route back to the wall on that - usually when a RF falls the CF is chasing the ball towards the infield from the fence area. Guys take routes that get them to where the play is.The White Sox CF played it off the wall like it was his ball at Fenway off the Monster. It was a great play but it was atypical of how MLB outfielders handle that play. And yes, Rosario is always backing guys up. I've never heard even the biggest Rosario haters say that he doesn't back up teammates.

 

 

And Rosario also habitually makes baserunning plays and throws that other guys wouldn't. With the good comes the bad.

In this case, the CF is backing up the play as he should be. He correctly read that the RF was going to the wall to try to catch it and he was shallow to back him up if the ball bounces off of the wall. The CF played it perfectly and that was made possible because he was where he was supposed to be. That's not atypical, that's basic fundamental defense. It was still a great play, but it was based on sound fundamental defense.

 

If you look at the dugout view of Kirby's catch along the plexiglass from Game 6 of the '91 WS, you'll notice Dan Gladden doing the same thing. He was in position to play the carom.

    • USAFChief likes this
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Only Here in Negative
Sep 20 2019 10:11 AM

 

Even if you can walk to third, NEVER even attempt to go to third in that situation. Just don't do it! Period! You're going to score on a hit from second, anyways, with two out. We needed Sano to come up to bat there. Rosario blew it big time. 

 

Well this seems hyperbolic . If you can walk to 3rd, you should. You score on a wild pitch or an infield single or a balk. Or a solid single right to an outfielder. You get a runner in a right handed pitcher's vision. You prevent an infield from shifting as strongly on a lefty. This is just me, but it sure seems like a triple fires up a team in a way a double doesn't. There's just something magic about a triple. There's a million good things about being on 3rd instead of 2nd.

 

The "never make the last out at 3rd" is a great axiom for Little League, where most of us learn it. Most kids don't have the judgment to make good calls there and any hit to the OF is probably a run with two outs since the odd of a throw going home and a tag being applied are low. The rule still definitely applies to MLB but it should be relaxed a bit. There are definitely situations where it makes sense to make a reasonable gamble and get to 3rd. We should loosen up a bit on it.


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