MLB-2 outs in the 9th

You are at bat, facing a pitcher with a perfect game. Are you thinking about statistics on your baseball card, or are you thinking…let the pitcher have his moment? Surely this thinking must go through MLB player’s minds, no?

If you are behind by one run or two, any means at all to get on base is good form.

If you’re behind by several runs, bunting or trying to crowd the plate and draw a beanball are bad form, but it’s always acceptable to try for an honest hit. Or, I would think, to draw a walk.

I play for the other team, and we’re trying to win the game. Fuck his perfect game.

I might also think that “letting” the other guy get an achievement devalues the concept of achieving something. Perfect games matter because you managed to get all these professional hitters out, not because they got out on purpose.

You never give it up to benefit the pitcher. As the batter you have to do everything you can to get on base, too bad for the pitcher. It doesn’t work the other way around though, pitchers are often suspected of tossing a meatball to allow a hitter to set or break a record.

I’ve been watching baseball for almost 30 years and I have never heard of anyone doing this, or being accused of doing it. I may have missed a story or two in three decades, but… often?

After Yu Darvish almost got the perfect game last night, it has been pointed out elsewhere on the Internet (Deadspin has a link to a site which appears to be overwhelmed by the traffic being directed to it and won’t load on my PC), that fewer people have broken up a perfect game on the final out than have perfect games. Who wouldn’t want to be one of those guys?

Any player that would let the pitcher have his moment should find new line of work.

He should be thinking ‘Fuck that guy! Take THIS!!!’

The only one I can think of off the top of my head is one or two of the pitches to McGwire around 61 in 1998 were pretty much meatballs. Nobody ever admitted it though, and they were some lousy pitchers anyways.

The obvious non-baseball example is the “sack” record when Favre laid down for Michael Strahan.

Here’s a well known case where Denny Maclain fed Mickey Mantlea pitch.

A lot of pitchers were suspected of feeding hittable balls to McGwire.

Cal Ripken’s HR off of Chan Ho Park in the 2001 All Star Game was extremely meaty, but hey - it was Cal’s last ASG. But during the regular season? No - McGwire’s dingers are pretty much the exception.

As to the OP - you try your hardest for a clean hit (bunts are extremely poor form, and will have pitches coming at your head every time you ever face that team again). Working the count for a walk is fine as well.

In a one or two run game when your team is having no luck against a pitcher, a bunt is fair game. If it’s 7-0 then no, it would be bad form, but I don’t think too many players or teams would be upset if it’s a close game. A baserunner in a close game is more important than the other team’s pitcher’s perfect game.

Also worth noting that teams have, in fact, on two occasions in major league history scored 9 runs with 2 outs in the ninth inning, so even a 7-0 game with one out left isn’t over.

No, I disagree - the other team would definitely have a problem with that. Agree or disagree with the “unwritten rules of baseball”, but that one’s most definitely in there. You square up for a bunt in that situation, you’re getting one in your ear the next day.

Only if the pitcher is Curt Schilling (wasn’t he the one that was a dick about that a few years ago?).

If you’re behind by two, and you can get on by bunting, you’ve brought the tying run to the plate. That’s huge! Thinking you can’t bunt in a close game in a no-hitter/perfect game situation is only an unwritten rule in a few entitled pitchers’ minds.

Agreed, but bunting in that situation would seem to be more about just breaking up the no-hitter than trying to get back in the game. If you’re going to make up 7 runs, you can’t play small ball.

Or eleven years. Whatever. Also, Schilling wasn’t a dick, his teammates were. Other than that, I had it all correct.

I heard a little different version of the story. McLain calls Bill Freehan out to the mound and says “Let’s let Mickey hit a home run- we’ve already got the pennant and he’s retiring.”

Freehan agrees and asks Mantle where he wants the pitch. Mantle tells him to fuck off. Freehan says “no, we’re serious. Where do you want it?”

Mantle says “High and tight”. McLain lays one in there and Mickey fouls it off. “Same place” he says. Next pitch, same spot, Mickey drills it for a homer. As he crosses the plate he says “Thanks, Bill.”

The next batter, Joe Pepitone, comes up. Pepi says “Can I get one of those?” The next pitch knocks him down.

Ripken’s home run in his 2131st game was widely rumored to be have been a meatball as well. I don’t know the truth, but that was an ugly pitch and its positive meatball status wouldn’t surprise me.

I don’t disagree with this. But you’re still getting one in your ear the next day if you do it.

And it wasn’t just Schilling who was pissed when it happened to him. His teammates were. Hell, his manager is STILL pissed off.

Yes, bunting in that spot leverages the situation because the infield is out several more feet to help field a ground ball. Unless there’s something really tempting a batter (like a very blatant shift), the expectation is that the batter gives it his best shot doing what he always does. If it’s Ichiro or Jose Reyes, I think you can accept a bunt-single attempt. If it’s a Molina, then a bunt is going to be seen as a huge dick move.

That’s more how I heard it originally, that Mick didn’t believe he was getting the pitch.