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Dallas Braden almost had to school someone else on the unwritten rules

May 10, 2010, 9:34 AM EDT

Dallas Braden headshot.jpgThe only downside to Dallas Braden’s perfect game yesterday is that we narrowly missed out on a chance to have him once again bring the 209 noise about respect and the unwritten rules and all of that jive.

The scene: fifth inning, nobody out, Evan Longoria at the plate. He attempts to reach on a drag bunt. Bunt goes foul, life goes on, Longoria ends up going down on strikes.

Braden kept his cool about it, but I can’t help but think that he was seething inside about someone trying to break up his no-no with a bunt.  Not doing that sort of thing is one of the unwritten rules, you know.

Just ask Bob Brenly.  He was the Diamondbacks manager back in 2001 when Curt Schilling had a perfect game going against the Padres in the eighth inning. Padres catcher Ben Davis laid down — or rather, popped up — one of the uglier bunts you’ll ever see, but the ball managed to elude second baseman Jay Bell just long enough for Davis to reach.  The Diamondbacks freaked out, with Brenly calling the move “chicken” after the game and saying “Ben
Davis is young and has a lot to learn. That was just uncalled for.”

That set off a nice little controversy about whether it’s kosher to break up a no-hitter with a bunt.  My memory has it that Brenly’s position was a minority one and that at the time most people were of the view that an opposing team can and should do everything in its power to win the game. That game was 2-0 at the time and the Padres and Diamondbacks were tied for first place, so I was totally cool with the bunt attempt.

I haven’t seen anyone complaining about Longoria’s attempt yesterday, but it was 4-0 at the time, which I suppose makes it a tad less defensible. Of course, it was also earlier in the game, so that makes it a tad more defensible.

My guess is that even hardcore unwritten rules guys would have a tough time criticizing Longoria’s bunt attempt. But the day is still young and, to my knowledge, no one has thrust a microphone into Bob Brenly’s face about it yet.

140 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Adam - May 10, 2010 at 5:31 PM

    What’s so special about a perfect game if the other team is required to remove a weapon from its arsenal in order for you to achieve it?

  2. chillinmf - May 10, 2010 at 5:38 PM

    1st inning, 9th inning it doesnt matter, You play the game to win. To have some whiny little pitcher complaining about unwritten rules is just ridiculous. SHUT UP AND PLAY THE GAME!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Ricky - May 10, 2010 at 5:47 PM

    I agree with the majority and clearly the game has changed. 50 years ago in this situation there were some in the major leagues who would have leaned into any pitch inside, just to break up the perfect game and get in the pitcher’s head. That same person would have had a 90 mph fastball thrown at his head next appearance also, but that was the way the game was played.
    All is fair when trying to win a game, some may call it bush league, but many things in the game could be called the same at times.

  4. Mike G. - May 10, 2010 at 5:57 PM

    This is one of the pettiest posts I’ve ever seen. Dude throws a perfect game and you speculate about how he might have reacted, without one quote backing it up? Give me a break.

  5. Bob - May 10, 2010 at 6:03 PM

    Who cares? No one knows how to bunt any more.

  6. James - May 10, 2010 at 7:15 PM

    When AL pitchers step up to the plate, then they can talk. Always do you best and try to win. What’s so hard about that?

  7. EvilEmpirE2010 - May 10, 2010 at 7:22 PM

    Braden and his Granny are huge douche bags.
    A-Rod ( Mr.SICK IT)

  8. EvilEmpirE2010 - May 10, 2010 at 7:28 PM


  9. kompleatkaos - May 10, 2010 at 8:22 PM

    When I saw E. Longoria attempt that drag, I yelled out loud, “Oh hell, it’s ON NOW.” Much to my surprise, “D-Bra(y) from da 209″…maintained a level of professional decorum of which I doubted he had. I thought aloud that “Longo” is about to get knocked the fuque OUT!!! If not literally, at the very least, a good ole Southern Fried tongue-lashing that would have left Evan as dick-less as Eva. Even I have heard of THIS unwritten rule, so there is no doubt that the Gatekeeper Of The Unwritten Rules, D-Bray from da 209, could have quoted Longo the page, chapter, footnotes, and author…if, errr, any of that unwritten stuff were, errr, perhaps written down…somewhere!
    The point is that a “rule” was indeed broken and the Curator Of The Unwritten passed up on a golden “Teachable Moment” just so that he might stay focused on his paying job. It not like no one has ever pitched a perfect game. They’re old hat by now. It’s been done 19 times now.
    But how many “teachable moments” will there be? For certain, ONE has now been wasted…and just because A-Rod wasn’t around…with his steroids and his money…and his starlettes…and his looks…and his physique…and his HOF numbers…while Grandma and D-Bra(y) were splitting the last can of BeenyWeenies, as ferners kept a-coming across our borders…taking baseball jobs from “Real Americans”…and…and…a few for our coloreds…oh, oh, let me be PC and call ’em NIG-grows!
    And IF An-Droid is from Florida, why won’t he SHOW his…Birth-o Certificate-o, huh? It’s cause he’z a damned doper Mez-Skin, is why!!! I GOT proof, too. I seent it…on da Inanet!

  10. Bystander - May 10, 2010 at 8:27 PM

    Maybe breaking up a perfect game with a bunt is a cheap shot — IF it’s 2 out in the bottom of the ninth and you’ve let the opposing team score 15 runs. In this case the chance of victory is so close to zero that the only conceivable reason to bunt would be to break up the perfect game. Other than extremes like that, bunt away.

  11. Hands Four - May 11, 2010 at 3:51 AM

    to those calling Braden all sorts of names because he supposedly whined about the bunt attempt: he didn’t. No one is saying he did. But why let facts get in the way of your sneering, eh?
    “Longoria tried a bunt in the fifth – and, no, Braden didn’t have any issues with it; ‘An intelligent play,’ he said” (St. Pete Times recap)
    Admittedly, it’s easier for Braden not to have issues with it since the attempt didn’t work, but still.

  12. jwb - May 11, 2010 at 4:26 PM

    “Everything is cool as long as the next time Longoria faces the As he gets an unwritten fastball in the ribs.”
    If it was followed by 50 game suspensions for the pitcher and the manager, yes, I would be ok with that. One hundred games each if either uses the phrase “unwritten rule” during their appeal hearings.
    “Dallas Braden. Out of 18 others who has done this feat he by far is the biggest whiner.”
    How much do you know about Lee Richmond?

  13. D - May 13, 2010 at 5:14 PM

    I just want someone to write down the unwritten rules.

  14. Cheles - May 21, 2010 at 1:36 PM

    I am so damn tired of hearing about Dallas Braden. Some please explain to me when he became a baseball God. For christsake he is still trying to exend his 15 minutes of fame over the A-Rod thing. Its done, over…move on. I dont care if the guy thru a no-no, I would respect him more if he got off his self imposed high horse and just came out and played the game. Braden’s problem is that he is just a little fish swimming in a big pond that is filled with a lot of fish that at bigger, better and making a hell of a lot more money than he is. He should take some of his own sage advice that he offered Rodriguez, learn to be a team player instead of trying to be a glory hound. Get over yourself Dallas….your no-no was merely a fluke.

  15. K - Jun 7, 2010 at 6:43 PM

    Get OVER the Alex Rodriguez thing!! It only makes your comments look completely biased and with no no merit. You look like another Yankee hater, so noone will give anything you say any legitimacy. SOOOO, good luck with that..

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