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The Dodgers hit into a triple play last night

Aug 16, 2011, 10:30 AM EDT

Los Angeles Dodgers v Milwaukee Brewers Getty Images

There are some of you who don’t read “And That Happened” in the morning.  The stats tell me so. Which is fine. I mean, if you want to go through life with one hand tied behind your back, hey, your loss.  Like smoking and riding a motorcycle without a helmet, it’s totally your right to do so until it is outlawed by people who know what’s best for you.

So if you are one of those people — and if you didn’t watch the Dodgers-Brewers game last night — you missed Milwaukee turning a half-sweet triple play.

I say half-sweet because the sweetest version is the lightning-fast around the horn thing in which the third baseman fields a hot shot, steps on the bag, fires it to second and then the second baseman fires it to first. The lame version is “the second baseman caught a line drive, the base runners had a brain lock and everyone stood around wondering what was going on while he tagged anyone he could find” kind of thing. I consider those akin to an inside the park homer when the center fielder is knocked unconscious and the ball just rolls around.

This one was OK, though. Some bad base running by Matt Kemp, but there was some athleticism and kinetic energy on display, and that’s all we can really ask, ya know?

  1. cur68 - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:38 AM

    Really? “an inside the park homer when the center fielder is knocked unconscious and the ball just rolls around”? That’s happened? Was Canseco involved?

    • CJ - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:44 AM

      maybe the guy wasn’t unconscious but I remember something to that affect happening where the outfielder was more or less laid out and the play result in an inside the parker. I don’t think it was Canseco, but I’m sure he was guilty allowing a few inside the parkers in his own right.

      I’d argue that any inside the parker against Canseco should also be considered in lame version category, even if he wasn’t unconscious at the time, just because of his overall lack of defensive prowess. I mean, this is the same guy that allowed a homer because his missed the ball with the glove, was struck by it in the head and it bounced over the fence. And that’s just one example.

      • cur68 - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:47 AM

        Who ever that ‘laid out’ guy was, he deserves to be a household name. At least as much as Jose Canseco is.

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:49 AM

        Wait…when was the last time Canseco was conscious?

      • CJ - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:52 AM

        Utley.

        Admittedly never. I was going more for the medical definition of conscious, but even that is debatable now that I think aboutit.

      • CJ - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:57 AM

        Cur,

        After a quick google search, interestingly enough Lou Pinella was a victim of such an occurrence. And another was the Clark-Herndon collision that gave Lacy an inside the parker http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1093959/index.htm.

    • tolbuck - Aug 16, 2011 at 11:12 AM

      Something similar happened in 1971. Tommy McCraw of the Senators hit a 140 foot inside the parker. The Tribe’s SS, LF, and CF collided and were hurt on the play. None of them ended up with the ball. All 3 had to be removed from the game.

  2. FC - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:47 AM

    There are some of you who don’t read “And That Happened” in the morning. The stats tell me so. Which is fine

    What’s the WAR on that?

  3. FC - Aug 16, 2011 at 10:57 AM

    I say half-sweet because the sweetest version is the lightning-fast around the horn thing in which the third baseman fields a hot shot, steps on the bag, fires it to second and then the second baseman fires it to first.

    I personally think that Eric Bruntlett’s game ending unassisted triple-play was super-sweet: Line drive over 2nd base while runners on 1st and 2nd double-steal. Catches the ball, steps on second and tagged the runner from 1st who’s just arriving at 2nd base, Good Game, Let’s go Eat!

    It was an elegant and fluid triple-play. No gaffe’s there just a risk the Mets took when they tried a hit and run with man on 1st and 2nd, no outs and unfortunately hit the line drive precisely at the location where Eric Bruntlett was as he moved in to cover the bag at second. The Baseball Gods like to do that sometimes when said player committed two errors earlier in the frame allowing the whole fracas to begin with.

    • Utley's Hair - Aug 16, 2011 at 11:04 AM

      I think Morandini’s was better.

      • cur68 - Aug 16, 2011 at 11:25 AM

        The triple play in the World Series that Bob Davidson screwed up was, simultaneously, the best and worst ever. The Braves were out, 1, 2, 3 no question. I cheered like mad when Devon White made the catch against the wall. 1 out. I tipped my hat to Deion Sanders when he crossed up his fellow base runner. 2 outs. I pronounced the triple play as Gruber swiped Neon Deion’s foot. I threw my hot dog at Bob Davidson when he screwed up AGAIN. That was the best triple play ever. Pissed away by Bob “Dung-For-Brains” Davidson.

      • FC - Aug 16, 2011 at 12:00 PM

        I’m going to respectfully disagree Mr. Hair. It was the exact same play no doubt but here’s the key difference: Morandini’s play was in the 6th inning and the Phillies eventually lost. Bruntlett’s play ended the game in a Phillies victory, just for that I have to declare Bruntlett’s unassisted triple play the better one, but only by a hair, one of Utely’s to be precise. After all Utley is the best Phillies 2nd Baseman in recent memory so using that hair is the right metric to distinguish both triple plays.

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 16, 2011 at 12:36 PM

        Obviously, I can’t argue with your choice of hairs to use.

        However, you use the fact that Bruntlett’s own fielding gaffes led to the possibility and necessity for said triple play. I see that as a fact which itself deems his triple play as flawed. Therefore, Morandini’s trifecta wins out—by an Utley hair. 8)

      • FC - Aug 16, 2011 at 1:16 PM

        LOL! To each his own Mr. Hair. I guess I see a quality of redemption in Bruntlett’s play. Rarely do you get to see a man able to correct his mistakes in such a spectacular game-ending fashion, with Victory as the end result. Morandini’s play, I feel was all for naught due to the outcome in extra-innings.

        Peace be with you Mr. Hair!

  4. paperlions - Aug 16, 2011 at 11:20 AM

    People smoke while riding motorcycles?

    • b7p19 - Aug 16, 2011 at 11:29 AM

      How else are they going to look cool on a motorcycle?

    • The Rabbit - Aug 16, 2011 at 3:37 PM

      Sure. Although lighting cigs can be a bit tricky on the highway.

  5. koufaxmitzvah - Aug 16, 2011 at 11:40 AM

    I like how Charlie Steiner began the call by saying he hit a “comebacker”.

    Which I guess is like calling a warning track fly ball that hits off the top of Canseco’s head and then over the fence as a pop-up to the right fielder.

    • FC - Aug 16, 2011 at 12:07 PM

      Speaking of balls that hit the top of fielders heads my all time favorite is the one in the 2006 Caribbean Series when Venezuelan SS Alex Gonzalez (yes that’s the same guy with the Braves, obviously Prado’s excellent play has not rubbed off on his countryman, but I digress) hit a short popup that had the Dominican Republic SS and LF scrambled to field with the tying run in circulation. The lights must have blinded them because the SS lost track of the ball and had half a second to raise his arms like saying: “Where is it?” before it hit him on the head and caromed back into deep left field. The LF simply collapsed and laughed his head off while the runner tied the game and Alex Gonzalez scored the winning run. (my memory might be betraying me as to whether Gonzalez was the winning run or whether he pushed the winning run across the plate).

      • koufaxmitzvah - Aug 16, 2011 at 12:48 PM

        With Uncle Chuckles announcing, that’s a high fly ball to left field.

  6. pbannard - Aug 16, 2011 at 12:24 PM

    That’s the second time you’ve called it a bad baserunning decision by Kemp, and I couldn’t disagree more. With one out, it’s a bad play, but it’s worth the risk to try to score there with two outs (which there obviously were by that point), and it was a bang-bang play, which, on replay, the ump might have missed due to a great slide by Kemp (it looked to me like he reached his hand over the tag to get to the plate). Plus, the Dodgers are offensively challenged, and .204 hitting Dioner Navarro was on deck.

    • Jeff J. Snider - Aug 16, 2011 at 12:31 PM

      Yeah, with the Dodgers offense, Kemp’s best chance of scoring is to try to sneak in there. If Fielder hadn’t been so alert to make the throw quickly, and/or if the umpire had made the right call, we’re calling it a heads-up baserunning play.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Aug 16, 2011 at 12:49 PM

        It looked like Kemp avoided the tag on his arm making him safe.

    • Jeff M. - Aug 16, 2011 at 3:10 PM

      I agree with you. The Dodgers need to try to score by any means necessary. The fact that it looked pretty close on replays tells me that sending Kemp wasn’t a bad decision.

  7. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Aug 16, 2011 at 8:30 PM

    “the sweetest version is the lightning-fast around the horn thing in which the third baseman fields a hot shot, steps on the bag, fires it to second and then the second baseman fires it to first”

    I guess someone on the Red Sox reads your blog and decided to turn a sweet triple play

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