For years, even decades, the so-called “unwritten rules” in MLB have existed and dictated how certain things are done.
Take the foot off the gas when there is a big lead in your favor, don’t swing at a pitch in a 3-0 count (especially when winning by a lot of runs), and don’t go crazy celebrating in front of your rival (after strikeouts, home runs, or other key plays) are a few of those “customs,” so to speak.
During Tuesday night’s game, a 13-2 San Francisco Giants victory over the San Diego Padres, we saw one of these “rules” being “broken” when Giants’ player Mauricio Dubon bunted for a base hit with a nine-run lead.
MLB teams don’t like that when they are losing: it is perceived as a lack of respect.
However, Giants’ manager Gabe Kapler supported his team.
“Gabe Kapler says he fully supported Duggar stealing and Dubon bunting for a hit. The goal is to score as many runs as possible and exhaust an opponent,” The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly tweeted on Wednesday.
Gabe Kapler says he fully supported Duggar stealing and Dubon bunting for a hit. The goal is to score as many runs as possible and exhaust an opponent.
— Andrew Baggarly (@extrabaggs) April 13, 2022
The “Unwritten Rules” Are Often Pointless
Last year, when Yermin Mercedes hit a home run by swinging at a 3-0 pitch made by a position player (Willians Astudillo) in a wide-open game, Chicago White Sox manager Tony La Russa infamously criticized his own player for breaking these “rules.”
But players need to get their stats: their salary arbitration and free agency salaries depend on the numbers they post, whether they come in “garbage time” or not.
The game, as Kapler says, is about who scores the most runs, and Dubon can’t keep the foot off the gas: what if the Padres scored a huge rally and built a comeback?
The “unwritten” rules, in a lot of cases, are pointless and take the fun out of the game.