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Nice guy.  Have some blogs.  Do baseball research.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

John Smoltz: lefty batters can easily bunt for hits against the extreme shift.

In January former pitcher John Smoltz was elected to the Hall of Fame.  Feb. 27, 2015 Smoltz was on MLB Network and was adamant that batters should have no trouble laying down a bunt into the empty area near third base.  Smoltz repeated this in multiple ways and the program showed game video of 27 year old lefty batter Kyle Seager of Seattle doing this multiple times.  Seager was even shown in isolation trotting to first because the defensive team had no chance to throw Seager out at first base.

Smoltz was making the obvious point that I had made in numerous posts in 2014: that a major league batter should have no problem putting the bat on the ball in a sacrifice stance but when no fielders are in position to field the ball.  Unlike Smoltz, I claim that batters should do this every time against the extreme shift and that they should easily achieve a .500 batting average.  More on that in a future post.

I feel somewhat vindicated.  Early last year I had lunch with a few friends who are intelligent and otherwise well educated.  Two were adamant that bunting is much harder than I thought and that I was naive for thinking that all batters, even slow ones, could and should bunt successfully against the extreme shift.  John Smoltz provided a big fat "I told you so".

1 comment:

Cliff Blau said...

If John Smoltz says it, it must be true.