The St. Louis Cardinals lost their ace, Chris Carpenter, after the lifetime .091 hitter injured himself while batting. Future Hall of Famer Tom Glavine, at age 43, might never pitch again after injuring his shoulder while batting in a minor-league game.
It Is About The Money, Stupid, have noted that this has been an occasional column trope for more than a year. It does no harm to join the chorus. Watching National League pitchers try to hit, and putting up with the craven semi-intentional walk to the No. 8 hitter whenever he comes up with two out and first base open, harkens back to H.L. Mencken's line about he hated sports as rabidly as those who like sports hate common sense,
Rob Neyer of ESPN.com had his say, "I still say the game's just a little more interesting if there's a difference between the leagues. So, no."
There is some truth to that. College football often has more novelty than the NFL, since on a given Saturday, you can see one team trying to move the ball with the run-oriented option or and another using a pass-wacky offence like Texas Tech's. The difference there is you're seeing different approaches to doing something well.
Pitchers hitting goes against that grain. Think about it. Tom Glavine, over the run of his 20-plus season, has had a rep for knowing how to handle a bat. His career average is .186, with a sub-McGlovin .454 on-base-plus-slugging (OPS). This is a good-hitting pitcher. Like Jason at IIABTMS says:
"I'd rather watch a skilled hitter work against the opposing pitcher. I think a league with uniform rules is better than a league with half the teams playing by different rules. Especially a rule as major as the DH, particularly when it comes to the World Series."There is some mild hypocrisy on the part of the National League dinosaurs. The DH is used in the minor leagues, except when two NL-affiliated teams play each other, so they don't mind using it for the purpose of player development. NL teams regularly use the DH during spring training games.
Baseball tends to be progressive as a business (case in point: the MLB Network, not that we'll ever know in Canada, thanks again, Rogers) while liking the illusion of permanency on the diamond. Don't expect the National League to add the DH. Even borrowing the minors' rules, which allow the DH to be used in all interleague games, is probably too radical.
That doesn't mean we can't point out this idiocy, time and agan.
Damn, the Jays
- One game never proves a whole lot, but you could have set your watch to the Jays coming from ahead to lose 8-5 to Oakland on Friday. It just felt like an evenout was due after that 8-3 start fashioned against the AL Central, and the Jays have lost the season series. vs. the Athletics in seven of the past 10 seasons.