Yankees: Ranking the dumbest unwritten rules in baseball
3. Take on a 3-0 count when your team is up big
Why are we going to give the pitcher a free pass? These are the unwritten rules?
Let’s start here since this is what we’re all jabbering about. In a society that seems to push back against participation trophies, it’s one of the bigger mysteries as to why it’s such an outrage to swing on a 3-0 count when your team has a healthy lead. Are the big bad tough guys scared of losing by even more runs?! Oh please, don’t score more!!!
Why should ANY team take their foot off the gas pedal at any point? How often do baseball games truly get out of hand? We’ll see a 10-run victory here and there, but that’s it. An invisible doctrine that dictates when a player should swing his bat is as arbitrary as it gets.
When Tatis Jr. stepped into the batter’s box with the bases loaded, it was the top of the eighth with one out and the Padres up seven runs. A few hours earlier, we saw the Atlanta Braves rally back in the bottom of the ninth to score four runs and walk it off against the Nationals by a score of 7-6. That was against one of the game’s best relievers in Daniel Hudson.
The Padres bullpen is much more erratic, too. We’re not saying they’d easily surrender seven runs in two innings, but what if Tatis takes 3-0, then fouls off a 3-1 pitch, then grounds into a double play and the Rangers score four runs in the bottom half of the eighth? Stuff happens in sports. If you can’t handle getting beaten too badly, then maybe don’t play?