Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
April 26, 2006
BASEBALL: I Hate Barry Bonds

I really hate Barry Bonds. Well, Bonds' game-tying, ninth-inning three-run homer off Billy Wagner pretty well answers why people still pitch around him in that situation. Though I still think there are too many situations where he gets walked.

UPDATE: Adding insult to injury, Armando Benitez gets out of a bases-loaded jam in the 10th.

SECOND UPDATE: Mets rally in the 11th and win! This is exactly the kind of game championship teams win, coming back after blowing a 3-run lead on the road on an error (by Wright) and a bomb in the ninth. Bonds flies out against Darren Oliver to end it.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 6:38 PM | Baseball 2006 | Comments (18) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

What are you doing watching an afternoon baseball game? Get back to work!

Posted by: Al at April 26, 2006 7:39 PM

It's called a radio.

Posted by: The Crank at April 26, 2006 7:51 PM

Although it didn't work, I think Willie made the right call pitching to Bonds. If you can't pitch to Bonds with a left-handed reliever who throws 98 MPH, you really can't ever pitch to him.

Posted by: Jerry at April 26, 2006 10:06 PM

You really just can't pitch to him then.

After watching Bonds pull that sort of thing regularly against the Astros the last few years I've come to the conclusion that the only way you pitch to him in that situation is if its a 1 run game with the bases loaded. You just about have to walk him even if the bases are loaded as long as you aren't walking in the tying run.

Screw it. Make someone else beat you.

Posted by: Dwilkers at April 27, 2006 9:12 AM

Pitching to him was the right call. The real dispute I can make, if there really is one, is that Wagner got the pitch he wanted, high and ouotside, 99 mph (In San Fransisco, so it was probably 96).

Up and in, low and away. Up and in, low and away. You never hear up an out, low and in. There is a reason for that.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at April 27, 2006 9:46 AM

I think Randolph made the right call. An aging, if still dangerous, lefty slugger with elbow problems who's losing his bat speed vs. a lefty reliever who throws 97+ mph? What are they paying Billy Wagner for, if not to get the game's best hitters out? He made the right call, and it backfired. It happens to the best managers.

Posted by: Phunwin at April 27, 2006 10:06 AM

I would still pitch to him almost every time. There are only so many homeruns you can hit with just your arms.

Posted by: maddirishman at April 27, 2006 10:37 AM

I would too, I just think a 3-run lead with two outs and two guys on base is the time to walk him.

Posted by: The Crank at April 27, 2006 10:39 AM

I, too, think Bonds is a #**hole. Andy Van Slyck (sp) said Bonds' problem is that he is exactly as people perceive him to be.

Posted by: Hawkdoc at April 27, 2006 11:12 AM

I think you have to pitch to him.

If anyone cares (shameless plug time), I wrote about it this morning:

http://mikesneighborhood.blogspot.com/2006/04/ladies-gentlemen-your-first-place-ny.html

Posted by: Mike at April 27, 2006 12:39 PM

Instead of walking him, do what Don Drysdale (or was it Gibson, or Koufax) would do and plunk him. In the knee.

Or throw him low and away, low and away, low and away, high and in.

Posted by: rbj at April 27, 2006 1:05 PM

Koufax didn't hit too many batters. They usually didn't last long enough. He did go after Lou Brock though once. Brock bunted on him 3 straight times, right bact to Sandy, who fielded about as well as he hit (like Piazza-shameless plug to another thread), you get away with it when you are so good at your prime function.

Anyway, up comes Lou the 4th time, and down goes Lou. The word got out, and there were few bunts after that.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at April 27, 2006 1:11 PM

Darren Oliver got Bonds out to end the game? Darren Oliver?!? He came up with Bobby Witt! Isn't he like 160 years old now?

Posted by: Cousin Dave at April 27, 2006 3:06 PM

Also, minor correction: Andy Van Slyke.

Posted by: Cousin Dave at April 27, 2006 3:07 PM

Cousin Dave-

No, Jose Valentin is 160 years old. Darren Oliver died 160 years ago, but he was only 32 at the time.

Posted by: Mike at April 27, 2006 3:55 PM

Heh. I love threads like this.

'yeah, pitch him. plunk him in the knee.'

Hehe.

Posted by: Dwilkers at April 27, 2006 7:07 PM

It seems the general sentiment is to pitch to him, and I totally agree. Buster Olney was saying today that because of his knees, Bonds is having trouble reaching the low and away pitches. I think he's basically done, and I'd keep pitching to him.

Posted by: jinnmabe at April 28, 2006 2:12 AM

I don't like what Bonds has perpetrated but "done" is probably not correct. In his last 7 games he is hitting .308/.571/1.000 with 3 HRs. He is not what he once was but dude can still hit. Moises Alou is no piece of cake behind him but unless I have someone who can really pitch to left-handed hitters when the game is on the line, Barry gets a walk.

Posted by: jim at April 28, 2006 1:10 PM
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