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Should the shift be an illegal defense?

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32 replies to this topic

Poll: Infield shift (33 member(s) have cast votes)

Do you support a rule outlawing the IF shift?

  1. Yes (1 votes [3.03%])

    Percentage of vote: 3.03%

  2. No (32 votes [96.97%])

    Percentage of vote: 96.97%

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#1 kab21

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Posted 27 July 2014 - 11:50 AM

I hadn't really considered this as a possibility but I'm not really a fan of the IF shift.  Yes, players should have freedom to position themselves based on tendencies but I like players being in the traditional area of the IF.

 

http://hardballtalk....-combat-shifts/

 

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#2 biggentleben

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Posted 27 July 2014 - 11:59 AM

No, I'm not in favor of it.  The shift has been around for over a century.  It comes and goes in waves over the history of the game, and each time, someone figures out a way to beat it, everyone starts doing that, and the shift goes away for a while again.  The shift should be outlawed just as quickly as the knuckleball and hockey-style catcher's masks should be, which is to say never.

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#3 kab21

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Posted 27 July 2014 - 09:51 PM

To me the shift is just another example of the epidemic of over managing with the result of 3+ hour games.  There might be some historical precedent of the shift being used 60-100 years ago but I doubt it was ever as often and as dramatic as now.  right now the 3Bman has to run out to short right field.  This over managing is just getting silly. 

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#4 mike wants wins

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 08:19 AM

Why? The rules are you have to have 9 guys out there. Why can't they go wherever they want?

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#5 kab21

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 08:42 AM

Why? The rules are you have to have 9 guys out there. Why can't they go wherever they want?

 

Okay then stay in that zone for the entire inning.  I think it's silly repositioning players mid inning for each batter.  Players have always shaded players towards their tendencies (like lefties pulling the ball) but this is just ridiculous.

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#6 mike wants wins

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 08:45 AM

What is silly about it? do you feel that way about basketball playing zone, or 2 on one on the best players? do you think they should not shift in football?

 

Other than "it isn't how it should be done", I don't really see the issue.

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#7 kab21

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 09:00 AM

Different games.  Very different.  This would be like saying that soccer should get rid of the offsides rule because basketball doesn't have offsides.

 

what I don't like is the micro-managing that is done in baseball currently and the time required to setup each defensive set.  We're not talking about a manager shifting a guy over 10 feet.  I think I would lose my mind if I saw this used in a HS baseball game.  Let the players play ball and take the manager and statistician out of the game where possible.

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#8 mike wants wins

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 09:07 AM

So, basically, abandon strategy and tactics? Should a hitter swing on 3-0, if he's not a power hitter, if it is a stike? I don't really see your point, at the MLB level.

 

It only seems different because it is not something you are used to. Shifting is just like using the zone defense in other sports.

 

I have no skin in this, emotionally, but you clearly do. Not criticizing, just trying to understand your view.

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#9 TheLeviathan

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 09:21 AM

Should we take out hit and run, bullpens, defensive replacements, and everything else just because a manager has a hand in it?

 

Seems silly to me.


#10 kab21

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 09:23 AM

How is this comparable to taking on 3-0? 

 

Shifting in baseball is not like using zone defense in other sports.  In pro basketball they have rules that don't allow teams to play straight up zone.  There are schemes that are allowed but there's an illusion of man on man basketball.

 

In all sports I can think of they aren't allowed to delay the game while they shift players all over the place.  In football the offense can snap at any moment.  In basketball there is no delay.  Everything happens on the fly.  In baseball the 3Bman has to run to the other side of the field and the pitcher just waits for it to happen.

 

I'm only emotional about the over managing of everything at the MLB level and how slow and boring the game becomes.  I would also like to see rules that don't allow a pitcher to be pulled until he has pitched to 2-3 batters.  A delay of game issued for those long, slow walks to mound allowing the bullpen pitcher to throw 2-3 more pitches.

 

I just don't see how the shift actually benefits the game of baseball.  I can see how it benefits a certain team that uses it but as long as the rule is the same then baseball would be better w/o the stupid shift.

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#11 kab21

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 09:26 AM

Should we take out hit and run, bullpens, defensive replacements, and everything else just because a manager has a hand in it?

 

Seems silly to me.

 

Getting rid of the micro-managing doesn't mean getting rid of basic managerial roles like using relief pitcher and using your limited subs.  Calling for a hit and run isn't comparable at all to micromanaging.

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#12 TheLeviathan

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 10:07 AM

Getting rid of the micro-managing doesn't mean getting rid of basic managerial roles like using relief pitcher and using your limited subs.  Calling for a hit and run isn't comparable at all to micromanaging.

 

I fail to see much of a difference.  In either case we are talking about the manager moving around the parts on the field.

 

I'd also suggest that players moving around for shifts is a drop in the ocean for why baseball is slow.  If that's your issue - take it up with advertising, the song and dance the hitter/pitcher play before every AB, and overuse of bullpen.


#13 biggentleben

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 11:35 AM

I fail to see much of a difference.  In either case we are talking about the manager moving around the parts on the field.

 

I'd also suggest that players moving around for shifts is a drop in the ocean for why baseball is slow.  If that's your issue - take it up with advertising, the song and dance the hitter/pitcher play before every AB, and overuse of bullpen.

 

I hope baseball is paying attention to the indy league that Pat Gillick (sp?) is part-owner of.  They are going toward speeding of the game, and a big part of their strategy is a pitch clock.  They're also going to limit the number of catcher visits to the mound per inning, among a few other things to help speed up the game.

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#14 SweetOne69

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Posted 29 July 2014 - 03:51 PM

I see you mention it delaying the game.  In my opinion it doesn't.  He has plenty of time to adjust while waiting for the batter to get in the box.


#15 Riverbrian

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Posted 29 July 2014 - 06:44 PM

The shift is perfectly fine... No matter how extreme... It's perfectly fine.

What should be illegal is being the type of hitter that you can extreme shift for.
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#16 biggentleben

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Posted 29 July 2014 - 07:19 PM

The shift is perfectly fine... No matter how extreme... It's perfectly fine.

What should be illegal is being the type of hitter that you can extreme shift for.

 

David Ortiz should be illegal?

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#17 drjim

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Posted 29 July 2014 - 07:26 PM

David Ortiz should be illegal?

 

Ted Williams?

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#18 USAFChief

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Posted 29 July 2014 - 07:50 PM

As BGB mentioned, the shift has been around for a century, and there is absolutely no logical reason to outlaw it. 

 

Speaking of things that have been around for every...so have the strategies and techniques that can be used by professional baseball players that render shifts counterproductive.

 

For Parmalee tonight, the Royals had zero infielders on the left side of the infield.  There is no reason Parmalee should have been out.  None, except his own inability or unwillingness to poke the ball the other way.

 

The inability to do so is a weakness of the hitter, not a rule being broken by the opposing manager.  Let Parms learn to hit the other way...and Mauer learn to pull the damn ball, while I'm at it.

Go Twins!


#19 biggentleben

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Posted 29 July 2014 - 08:10 PM

As BGB mentioned, the shift has been around for a century, and there is absolutely no logical reason to outlaw it. 

 

Speaking of things that have been around for every...so have the strategies and techniques that can be used by professional baseball players that render shifts counterproductive.

 

For Parmalee tonight, the Royals had zero infielders on the left side of the infield.  There is no reason Parmalee should have been out.  None, except his own inability or unwillingness to poke the ball the other way.

 

The inability to do so is a weakness of the hitter, not a rule being broken by the opposing manager.  Let Parms learn to hit the other way...and Mauer learn to pull the damn ball, while I'm at it.

 

That was very frustrating for me last year with Brian McCann, and he's continued the same thing in New York this year. A smart hitter will never have a problem with the shift.  Even if you're a pull hitter at your best, you lay down just enough bunts and/or squib hits to the opposite field to keep the defense honest.  Williams was smart enough to change his swing, per his report, when he saw he was being shifted against, and simply hit it over the shift, attacking with line drives over the head of defenders.  My great grandma was a huge baseball nut, and she once told me that Ted Williams would have beat Babe Ruth before Hank Aaron did if he wouldn't have fought in the wars and if he didn't change his swing for the shift.  She told me once that Williams could have hit 700 and .400 if he wouldn't have changed his swing for the shift.  As amazing as he was, she said he was even better before those adjustments (made just before he left for Korea, per her report).

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#20 kab21

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 10:04 PM

I hope a manager starts swapping OF'ers in key situations just to show you how ridiculous this is.

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#21 SgtSchmidt11

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 10:14 PM

The stats don't even really show that shifts are all that effective anyways.  I know about them but I would never run the extreme versions.  More shading, less shifting (SS closer/farther from 2nd, not in RF)


#22 TheLeviathan

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:51 AM

I hope a manager starts swapping OF'ers in key situations just to show you how ridiculous this is.


They don't already? As Sweetone said.....the outfielders could get in a round of musical chairs between some pitches if they wanted to.

Managers tell people where to pitch, when to swing, where to play, who gets to hit, who gets to pitch, etc. the notion that shifts are categorically different is what's ridiculous.

#23 kab21

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:14 AM

They don't already? As Sweetone said.....the outfielders could get in a round of musical chairs between some pitches if they wanted to.

Managers tell people where to pitch, when to swing, where to play, who gets to hit, who gets to pitch, etc. the notion that shifts are categorically different is what's ridiculous.

 

I have never heard of a manager swapping his LF and RF'ers during an inning for an extreme pull hitter.  Why have Delmon in RF against McCann if you have Revere in LF?

I look forward to the day that a pitching prospect is truly blocked by good pitchers.


#24 TheLeviathan

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 06:24 AM

I have never heard of a manager swapping his LF and RF'ers during an inning for an extreme pull hitter.  Why have Delmon in RF against McCann if you have Revere in LF?


If they did....what's the difference?

#25 mike wants wins

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 07:10 AM

The stats don't even really show that shifts are all that effective anyways.  I know about them but I would never run the extreme versions.  More shading, less shifting (SS closer/farther from 2nd, not in RF)

 

Which stats show that?

What I just typed is probably an opinion, not a fact. I mean, I'm usually right, so you should maybe assume it is or will be a fact soon, but that's up to you. :)


#26 Boom Boom

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 07:55 AM

I'd also suggest that players moving around for shifts is a drop in the ocean for why baseball is slow.  If that's your issue - take it up with advertising, the song and dance the hitter/pitcher play before every AB, and overuse of bullpen.

 

The one that really gets me now - the manager strolling out to the field to stall for time while the bench coach reviews the video to determine if they want to challenge or not.

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#27 Willihammer

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 02:21 PM

The average length of a Twins game is 3 hours 05 minutes, 50 seconds. By comparison, fifty years ago it was 2 hours, 44 minutes, 38 seconds. So even after lowering the mound, inventing the closer, the setup man, 100 count pitch limits, batting gloves, foul balls, shifts, instant replay, 9 figure contracts and 2 minute commercial breaks, Twins games are barely 20 minutes longer than they were in the Johnson administration.

 

I'd be more open to rule changes if someone could convince me the game was broken but I don't think it is.

Edited by Willihammer, 02 August 2014 - 02:23 PM.

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#28 Dance with Disco Dan

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 03:00 PM

You'll have to show me data that the game is being delayed even minutely while the players shift.  The shifting players aren't waiting for the batter to dig in before they move. Moreover, if the shift results in even one fewer baserunner per game, it more than offset any delay resulting from defenders moving around.  I think the "delay" argument is being used as a straw-man for something else - resistance to change, preference for status quo, etc.

 

Here is the shift rule MLB needs:  "If you work as a commentator for the MLB Network, you can be anti-shift but you CANNOT scream and shout about the worthlessness of the shift every time a ball goes for a hit against the shift through the spot a 'traditionally' positioned player would be if the team did not shift.  ALL MLB commentators must demonstrate some level of understanding that the shift is deployed to increase the PROBABILITY of fielding a batted ball and it is not a guarantee of fielding a batted ball."

 

This shall be known as the Ripken/Reynolds rule.  Get it on the books Bud.

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#29 drjim

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 03:25 PM

The average length of a Twins game is 3 hours 05 minutes, 50 seconds. By comparison, fifty years ago it was 2 hours, 44 minutes, 38 seconds. So even after lowering the mound, inventing the closer, the setup man, 100 count pitch limits, batting gloves, foul balls, shifts, instant replay, 9 figure contracts and 2 minute commercial breaks, Twins games are barely 20 minutes longer than they were in the Johnson administration.

 

I'd be more open to rule changes if someone could convince me the game was broken but I don't think it is.

 

I also think a part of this is increased time between innings for commercial breaks, something like 30 seconds, which can add 10 minutes or so to total length of game.

 

People just like to whine about length of games, it has been that way for 100 years. 

 

People also like to say it is too slow for the modern audience but I think they are looking at it wrong. Baseball works very well in a two screen culture.

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#30 Thrylos

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 04:43 PM

I think that baseball should adopt the short center (aka "rover") 

The folks who invented softball new something

 

/sarcasm

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