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Friday, April 11, 2014

Brian McCann, bunt it into that ocean at third base! Geez, how stupid are you? And how cowardly is your manager, Joe Girardi?

The hockey expression for a player's inability to shoot the puck into an empty or mostly open net: he can't put it the ocean.
Cabo Polonio, Uruguay
Yankee catcher Brian McCann can't buy a hit: OPS .356, rank 199.  But McCann refuses to even try to bunt it into that ocean at third base created by the extreme shift teams are playing against McCann.  In last night's Yankee win over the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium McCann had at least his second hit this season taken away from him by an infielder playing way out in right field.

Brian McCann must be stupid.  But he's not alone.  Yankee announcer Micheal Kay continues to ignore the bunting option and instead concentrates on the idea of defeating the shift by the batter learning to hit the ball to the opposite field.  Bunting would be much easier and have less of an impact on the batter's swing, at least in the short run.  Batters are generally better served by hitting the ball where it's pitched, outside pitches to the opposite field.

What's really amazing is that Brian McCann is the starting catcher of the New York Yankees.  And he can't figure this out?

Possibly more amazing is the cowardice displayed by his manager, Joe Girardi, himself a former starting catcher for the New York Yankees.  Just order your dummy player to bunt!  Geez, why are you so afraid?

How about a nice friendly instruction from Girardi to McCann?

McCann, you worthless, overpaid, piece of ___, BUNT the damn ball into the ocean!  There is no fielder near third base when you bat.  Haven't you noticed?  Any kind of lame bunt will work. Just bunt hard enough so that the opposing catcher can't waddle out and throw out your slow ass at first base.  Don't even try to bunt near the third base line.  Keep it at least ten feet fair.  There's no fielder in that zip code.  BUNT the damn ball!!!

There.  Writing that made me feel much better.  Watching this nonsense is maddening and makes my teeth hurt.  Willie Keller is doing cart wheels in his grave.  Keeler is known for the expression "Hit 'em, where they ain't".

Yankee fans should take direct action.  When McCann is batting against the extreme shift, chant:

Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!  Bunt!

If that doesn't work, try something more emphatic:

Bunt, you moron!  Bunt, you moron!  Bunt, you moron!  Bunt, you moron!

Previous posts on this subject:

Batters are dumber than usual this season, hitting into the shift most of the time.  Monday, April 7, 2014

But here's the thing.  These batters don't even need to change how they swing.  Don't swing at all.  Bunt.  Bunt for a hit.  Bunt for a double.  It's almost a sure hit and if the hit is for two bases the batter pads both his on base average and his slugging average and thus his OPS (on base plus slugging).

So what would we call someone who does not do this?  Dumb.

And what should we call a game like this?  Boring.

Shift fear: why are managers afraid to order their batters to bunt against the shift?  Thursday, April 10, 2014

McCann has five singles in 33 at bats (AB), plus one walk.  OPS .328, OPS+ -7.  Yes, NEGATIVE 7.  With the Yanks needing a base runner, not necessarily a home run (HR), McCann will not bunt for a hit against the shift.  For his career McCann's HR rate (AB/HR): 3,896/176=22.  So his chances of hitting a HR are about one out of 22, about 4.5%.

I'm guessing that any major league batter has about a 90% chance of bunting for a hit into the empty area of the shift, especially a lefty batter who is already closer to first base and the open area near third base the longest infield distance away.

The defense is giving the offense a single, possible double.

Why won't the batter take it?

Why won't the manager order the batter to take it?  ...

Novak Djokovic was born May 22, 1987 in in Belgrade, Yugoslavia and began playing tennis at the age of four.  He is generally considered to be one of the greatest tennis players of all time.  I'm guessing that Djokovic never played baseball.  I'm also guessing that with a little practice Djokovic could successfully bunt for a hit against major league pitching against the shift.  He'd be in his age 27 season.

Mantle won triple crown by bunting.  Friday, February 24, 2012

Mickey Mantle ...  12 hits in 20 AB.

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