Jose Canseco has thoughts about Fernando Tatis Jr. hitting a grand slam on a 3-0 pitch while up by seven runs because of course he does.
Back on Monday, Fernando Tatis Jr. awakened the spectre of the Unwritten Rules of Baseball. He dared to swing at a 3-0 pitch with the bases loaded and the Padres leading by seven runs. Then, to make matters even worse, he belted that pitch for a grand slam, earning the wrath of the baseball gods. And earning Manny Machado a pitch behind him.
But fear not! There is one man who dares to spit in the face of tradition and is willing to take on the baseball gods themselves. Jose Canseco has finally weighed in on Tatis’ homer, and unsurprisingly, does not see any problems.
Canseco does have a point. Had Tatis belted a grand slam on any other count, would it have been a big deal? It all counts the same in the box score regardless of what the unwritten rules may say.
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Baseball is a unique game. The sport lasts for a predetermined number of outs, not for a specific time. The teams cannot just sit on a lead and eat up the clock. They have to keep playing, to make those pitches and to field the balls in play. And the hitters need to keep swinging the bats, especially as no lead is ever completely safe until the final out is recorded.
But it is something that the unwritten rules frown upon. It is bad enough that these ‘rules’ want to remove any personality from the game and turn the players into stoic robots devoid of emotion. But to say that one should not swing at a pitch right down the middle because of a certain count and the score of the game is utterly ridiculous.
Thankfully, we have a man willing to speak the truth, no matter the cost. The Deep Throat of the Steroid Era, the one man who dared to shine the light in the dark shadows that the game wanted to ignore, Jose Canseco has awoken from his slumber. And in that moment, he spoke the truth.
For what it was worth, Fernando Tatis Jr. also stole third on Tuesday with the Padres enjoying a six run lead. Canseco must have loved seeing that as well.