Skip to content

Great Moments in Missing The Entire Point of Major League Baseball

Aug 21, 2013, 9:14 AM EDT

Arizona Diamondbacks v Los Angeles Dodgers Getty Images

I first saw that Bill Plaschke column about the Dodgers benching Yasiel Puig I linked in this morning’s And That Happened last night right after it went up.  At the time the Dodgers game was still going on and the column was still basically “the Dodgers needed to bench Puig for his own good; good call.” What I had missed until just a few minutes ago was Plaschke’s update which came after Puig hit the big go-ahead pinch-hit homer.

The update is something else:

They need less of Puig’s reckless on-field behavior. They need less of his arrogant refusal to listen to instruction. They need less of an attitude that infuriates umpires. But they love the victories that the reckless, arrogant attitude produces.

They needed to bench him Tuesday. But they couldn’t bear to bench him for the entire game.

He needs to learn. But Mattingly showed that he’s unwilling to possibly sacrifice a victory to finish the lecture … With one swing Puig won a game, but, in playing him, the Dodgers risked losing much more.

Sorry: but if you look at a manager putting a player into the game in a key spot and that player hitting a clutch, go-ahead homer as some bad thing, you may very well have disappeared up into your own butt, Mr. Sportswriter. You may very well have allowed your preferred narrative — “untamed, swaggering head case needs to be taught a lesson” — obscure the fact that Don Mattingly’s job is to win baseball games and Yasiel Puig’s job is to crush baseballs. This isn’t Little League. Life lessons are great if you can get them, but it’s winning that keeps people employed and fans going through the turnstiles.

I suppose the Dodgers’ lead is too big to expect the Dbacks or someone to catch them for the last playoff spot. And I certainly wish no misfortune on them. But it would be something if the NL West came down to the last day of the season and the Dodgers ended up making the playoffs by one game. If that happened I’d be curious to see if Plaschke remembered this game and his preference to see the Dodgers lose in the name of the Education of Yasiel Puig.

Latest Posts
  1. The Red Sox, Cubs and Rays employ neurological training to help hitters

    Sep 19, 2014, 12:16 PM EDT

    Clockwork

    It’s not as scary as what our friend Alex had to endure, here, but it’s still pretty cool.

  2. Geddy Lee’s baseball obsession makes it really hard for me to hate Rush

    Sep 19, 2014, 11:32 AM EDT

    Rush

    Come for the cool video. Stay for a way-too-long explanation of why I hate Rush. And the inevitable comments from Rush fans about why I’m wrong about this.

  3. Talking head says Jeter is “a fraud” and “you are all suckers”

    Sep 19, 2014, 10:34 AM EDT

    Derek Jeter Getty Getty Images

    Imagine being a person so awful and sour that you feel this is something reasonable to say.

  4. Yasiel Puig seems to be snapping out of his funk at the right time

    Sep 19, 2014, 9:16 AM EDT

    Yasiel Puig Getty Images

    After a good night last night he’s 12 for his last 30.

  5. It certainly looks like Barry Bonds’ criminal conviction is going to be overturned

    Sep 19, 2014, 8:53 AM EDT

    Closing Arguments Delivered In Barry Bonds Trial Getty Images

    That’s right: for the 2,559th time, Barry Bonds is gonna walk.

  6. There were some walkoffs last night. Let us watch them.

    Sep 19, 2014, 8:27 AM EDT

    Wilin Rosario AP

    I’m an old man who goes to bed early, so I couldn’t see all of this. If you’re like me, enjoy.

  7. And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

    Sep 19, 2014, 7:17 AM EDT

    Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 7.17.14 AM AP

    It’s not dark yet for the Brewers, but it’s getting there. It’s absolutely pitch black for the A’s, though.

  8. Anthony Rizzo wins 2014 Branch Rickey Award

    Sep 18, 2014, 11:15 PM EDT

    Anthony Rizzo Getty Getty Images

    Rizzo won the award in recognition of his community work with pediatric cancer patients.

  9. Report: Wally Backman could join Mets coaching staff in 2015

    Sep 18, 2014, 10:11 PM EDT

    Wally Backman, Tim Teufel

    We learned late last week that Wally Backman will join the Mets coaching staff on Friday to finish out the season. Now there’s a chance that he could remain in the major leagues to begin 2015.

  10. VIDEO: Derek Jeter hits first home run at Yankee Stadium this season

    Sep 18, 2014, 9:15 PM EDT

    Derek Jeter Getty Getty Images

    After snapping an 0-for-28 hitless streak last night, Derek Jeter homered at Yankee Stadium tonight for the first time all season.

  11. Giancarlo Stanton gives update on his recovery

    Sep 18, 2014, 8:58 PM EDT

    giancarlo stanton getty Getty Images

    Stanton suffered facial fractures and dental damage when he was hit in the face by a fastball last Thursday.

  12. Ryan Zimmerman goes 1-for-7, runs at 85 percent speed

    Sep 18, 2014, 8:27 PM EDT

    Miami Marlins v Washington Nationals AP

    It’s possible Zimmerman could be activated from the disabled list as soon as this weekend.

  13. Hanley Ramirez back in Dodgers’ lineup Thursday

    Sep 18, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

    Hanley Ramirez Getty Getty Images

    Ramirez has missed back-to-back starts with an elbow strain.

  14. Josh Hamilton had “sharp stabbing pains” in his chest

    Sep 18, 2014, 7:20 PM EDT

    billy hamilton getty Getty Images

    Josh Hamilton rejoined the Angels’ lineup Tuesday after sitting out 10 games with a right shoulder injury, but he missed last night’s game and is out of the lineup again tonight with more shoulder problems.

  15. Diamondbacks shutting down Daniel Hudson

    Sep 18, 2014, 7:10 PM EDT

    Daniel Hudson AP

    Hudson made it back to the majors this month for the first time since June 26, 2012.

  16. Jose Fernandez could begin throwing program on October 1

    Sep 18, 2014, 7:02 PM EDT

    Jose Fernandez AP AP

    Marlins ace Jose Fernandez is still a long way from pitching in the majors again, but he’s very close to picking up a baseball for the first time since his Tommy John surgery on May 16.

  17. Pneumonia could end Nolan Arenado’s season

    Sep 18, 2014, 6:31 PM EDT

    nolan arenado getty Getty Images

    Arenado has taken a strong step forward during his sophomore season in the majors, batting .287/.328/.500 with 18 home runs and 61 RBI over 111 games.

  18. Brock Holt not cleared to return from concussion

    Sep 18, 2014, 6:08 PM EDT

    brock holt getty Getty Images

    “Good news, but not as good as it could have been.”

  19. Whatever happened to Khalil Greene?

    Sep 18, 2014, 5:38 PM EDT

    Screen Shot 2014-09-18 at 5.37.31 PM AP

    Khalil Greene was a first round pick compared to Cal Ripken. Then he was a decent and at times excellent Major League shortstop. Then he disappeared.

Featured video

Patience finally paying off for Royals fans
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. R. Castillo (3360)
  2. G. Stanton (2611)
  3. A. Rizzo (2365)
  4. H. Ryu (2227)
  5. J. Hamilton (2162)
  1. N. Arenado (2105)
  2. M. Trout (2102)
  3. E. Gattis (1963)
  4. D. Ortiz (1885)
  5. A. Pujols (1838)