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Ron Washington: “They can take the analytics on that and shove it up their [bleep][bleep].”

Feb 24, 2014, 10:30 AM EDT

ron washington getty Getty Images

Ron Washington likes to bunt. A lot of people hate bunting. Sometimes, people try to tell Ron Washington that he shouldn’t bunt. This is what happens when they tell him that:

“I think if they try to do that, they’re going to be telling me how to [bleep] manage,” Washington said. “That’s the way I answer that [bleep] question. They can take the analytics on that and shove it up their [bleep][bleep].”

Washington has heard all the moans and complaints about his bunting.

“Mike Scioscia dropped 56 sacrifice bunts on his club, the most in the league, and he’s a genius,” Washington continued. “But Ron Washington dropped 53 and he’s bunting too much? You can take that analytics and shove it.”

Well, Mike Scioscia bunts too much too.

  1. markofapro - Feb 24, 2014 at 10:33 AM

    That ain’t no sh!t

  2. elwaysagenius - Feb 24, 2014 at 10:33 AM

    I love Ron Washington

  3. dan1111 - Feb 24, 2014 at 10:43 AM

    Washington must be referring to controversial analytical methods like counting. His team actually had significantly more attempts and sac bunts than the Angels last year, and the numbers “53″ and “56″ don’t appear anywhere.

    • The Dangerous Mabry - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:05 AM

      According to Baseball-Reference, 63 attempts for Texas, 54 for the Angels. Texas was second in the AL in attempts, LA was fourth. His numbers are off, but his general point that both teams employed the sac bunt more than most is probably fair. Of course, I don’t know of too many people who call Scioscia a genius for bunting so often. They tend to say he’s a good manager for other, reasons, not related to his penchant for the bunt.

      • rje49 - Feb 24, 2014 at 5:07 PM

        I think the answer to whether a manager has his team too much, or not, has to do with if you win the World Series or not.

    • shutdownespn - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:35 AM

      In fairness, the mind gets a bit cloudy when under the influence of cocaine.

      • angrytwitterguy - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:13 PM

        Nah, it sharpens, you’re thinking of marijuana

      • shutdownespn - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:45 PM

        Good point!

    • rje49 - Feb 24, 2014 at 8:06 PM

      Looks like I omitted an important word; should be “has his team BUNT too much”.
      Sorry.

  4. sabatimus - Feb 24, 2014 at 10:45 AM

    Hey, if you want to keep throwing outs to the other team, that’s fine with me Ron.

    • rdanie29 - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:14 PM

      So it’s fine to strike out with a guy on first, leaving him there, but it’s wrong to give up the same out to get him into scoring position? There is something wrong with your math.

      • The Dangerous Mabry - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:33 PM

        If you’ve got a guy in your lineup who’s going to strike out every time he comes to the plate in the AL, you have bigger problems than your bunting strategy.

      • Alex K - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:42 PM

        That’s not what he said. I’m not sure where you saw that he advocated striking out. A team that sac bunts is expected to score less runs than a team that doesn’t. There are some situations where a sac bunt is a fine play (pitcher hitting, tie game in bottom of 9th) but those are the exception.

      • cochranjohnslim7slider - Feb 24, 2014 at 4:07 PM

        Ron W likes the bunt so much? How many times last year did the Rangers fail to advance a runner to 2nd with no outs, …or fail to get a man on 2nd to 3rd with no outs? If you don’t move a man in either situation you are playing stupid baseball and just hoping for the best. But if Ron likes the bunt so much, why did the team trade Craig Gentry, one of the fastest players in the game. And then to trade him to division rivals Oakland who lives on speed? Whatcha doing, brain trust?

  5. drewsylvania - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:01 AM

    Moral: Some baseball people are dumb.

    • jimeejohnson - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:25 AM

      DirtyHarry1971 comes to mind.

  6. gothapotamus90210 - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:02 AM

    I think Ron Washington was the “holla” guy on Chappelle’s Show

    • Liam - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:58 PM

      Cradle of ****ing civilization!

  7. denseflea - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:04 AM

    Oh Ronald.

    Your candidness is appreciated.

  8. beefytrout - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:04 AM

    I love Wash, but his stubbornness to manage with his “gut” frustrates me.

  9. nymets4ever - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:06 AM

    I’m happy this foul-mouthed cretin choked away the World Series twice.

    • beefytrout - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:18 AM

      Idiot.

    • jimeejohnson - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:25 AM

      Just like a New Yawk loser to wish bad things on others.

      • nymets4ever - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:31 AM

        I didn’t wish anything you dumb hick, lol. I’m just glad it happened after the fact. And I still won’t need to wish anything because I already know that a Ron Washington-led team will never win anything.

    • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:43 AM

      Ive seen you get all holier than thou on Yasiel Puig, too. Ignored the rich old white man who’d done worse than Puig as well (Charlie Monfort). Now here you are acting like Ron Washington is the worst man on the planet. Another black man. Another over the top “i’m so outraged statement”. Hmmmmm. What does this say about you I wonder? Would you hold the same opinion and quick outrage trigger finger for, lets say, John Rocker? he’s been on these pages very recently being an idiot. Let me check and see what you said about JR—-well. Look at that. Na. Da. Bupkes. Yet here you are, all over Ron Washington for cursing and stuff. What DOES this say about you?

  10. infieldhit - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:18 AM

    I think Ron saw the word “analytics” and maybe misinterpreted things…

  11. fomeols - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    Ron Washington does a whole lot of things badly.
    If I were him, I wouldn’t be worried about Bunting, I would be worried about learning how to manage.

  12. kcroyal - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    I don’t hear anyone calling Scioscia a genius. Quite the opposite really.

    • infieldhit - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:18 PM

      You have to consider the sources I guess.

  13. rcali - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:35 AM

    “Get off my lawn!”

  14. drs76109 - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:37 AM

    I’d be particularly worried given that they fired his bench coach at the end of last season and Ryan is no longer there to protect him…

    • fomeols - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:08 PM

      Nolan is going to help the Astros getvtogether WS, and don’t bet against it

  15. tonyz6060chevy - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:37 AM

    Take that in the Wazoo Paul DePodesta !

  16. bostonboresme - Feb 24, 2014 at 11:53 AM

    Wash has gotta be one of my favorite managers. I’ll never forget him going ballistic on Angel Hernandez.

  17. butchhuskey - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:06 PM

    “Rickey loves people that talk in the third person” – Rickey Henderson

  18. paperlions - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:09 PM

    Ah, willful ignorance in all of its spring training glory. If you don’t care that sac bunts reduce your teams chances of scoring, you should probably find a different job than MLB manager.

    Sac bunts have their place. If the pitcher is up….or if scoring 1 and only 1 run wins you the ball game. Other wise, they are a bad idea.

    • Reflex - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:00 PM

      Just out of curiosity, what is the research on bunting? Your high level overview makes sense but I’m certain there must be exceptions and specific leverage situations where it makes sense. Also, does it apply to just bunts, or sac flies as well?

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:06 PM

        Just out of curiosity, what is the research on bunting?

        This issue isn’t bunting, per se, it’s sac bunting. When you intentionally give away an out because the defense knows it’s coming, you reduce your chance of scoring more than 1 run in an inning as PL mentions. See here:

        Run Expectancy Tables:

        http://www.tangotiger.net/re24.html

        However, if you are trying to bunt for a base hit, or sac bunt when the other team doesn’t know it’s coming, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s a long but good read from MGL about a Yanks playoff game in ’09 and their bunt strategy:

        http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/were-the-yankee-sac-bunts-in-the-8th-inning-correct/

      • Kevin S. - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:08 PM

        The Book broke down the deltas in run and win expectencies between the base-out states before and after the bunt to show it reduces RE/WE. Dave Cameron has made the argument from a game theory perspective that it makes sense to bunt sometimes to keep the defense out of optimal fielding position, and that analysis should focus on sac bunt attempts, not just actual sac bunts.

      • paperlions - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:19 PM

        I’m sure you can find some if you do some searches using terms like sacrifice bunt and run expectancy.

        No one hits a sac fly on purpose, they aren’t giving away an out on purpose, they just happen. All bunting is not bad….a skilled bunter or fast runner trying to bunt for a hit is totally different. Giving away outs reduces a teams chances of scoring > 1 run and slightly increases the chances of scoring only 1 run. As I said, if a team needs only 1 run to win the game, it is a good idea…but if a team needs more than 1 run to win the game (i.e. any time before the 9th inning), then sac bunts by non-pitchers just reduce a team’s chances of winning.

      • Reflex - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:22 PM

        You don’t believe that a sac fly is ever on purpose? I was under the impression that hitters with runs in scoring position will often do their best to hit the ball in the air deep without regard for defenders rather than use a line drive type swing in order to permit the runner to tag and score. You contend that is always an accident? Or at least that maybe its attempted but is not able to be differentiated from any other contact?

      • raysfan1 - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:25 PM

        Here you go: http://baseballanalysts.com/archives/2006/07/empirical_analy_1.php

        Obviously, the article is full of that analytic stuff that Washington hates, but the short version is that a team has a greater chance of scoring with no outs and a man on first than with one out and a man on second. It does not really matter whether it’s a sac fly or sac bunt.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Feb 24, 2014 at 3:19 PM

        I was under the impression that hitters with runs in scoring position will often do their best to hit the ball in the air deep without regard for defenders rather than use a line drive type swing in order to permit the runner to tag and score.

        If this were true*, wouldn’t it make more sense to try and hit a LD? They turn into hits far more often than a GB or FB:

        http://www.crawfishboxes.com/2013/9/9/4677304/outcomes-of-flyballs-line-drives-and-groundballs-by-direction-2013

        *note I’m sure players try to get loft under the ball to create a sac fly situation, but whether they are actually able to or not is beyond my field of knowledge

      • Reflex - Feb 24, 2014 at 3:37 PM

        Well I think that’s why its called a sacrifice. Rather than trying for a hit, they are just trying to get it far away enough from home that a run can score.

        Again though, I don’t know if its true. Its often claimed by announcers, but it could be post-hoc rationalization I suppose.

  19. happytwinsfan - Feb 24, 2014 at 12:50 PM

    does the debate regarding bunting consider how many times the hitter is unable to get the bunt down and winds up having to hit with two strikes? my personal impression is that that’s the end result around a fifth of the time.

    • paperlions - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:23 PM

      No, it doesn’t. The data used was just on the effects of “successful” sac bunts, which reduces the average number of runs a teams scores, but does result in a very small increase in the likelihood of scoring exactly 1 run…so if 1 run is all you need to win (i.e. it’s in the 9th or bottom of the 8th), fine….but if you need more than that, successful sac bunts lower your chances winning. If you include failed attempts (Ks, pop outs, etc.) as well as hitters that wind up swinging away with 2 strikes, the negative effects of sac bunts by non-pitchers is even greater.

      • happytwinsfan - Feb 24, 2014 at 3:39 PM

        Jeesh! considering that i’d say it doesn’t make sense to bunt even in the bottom of the 8th unless the runner is on second with 0 outs, the game is tied, and you have high confidence in your 9th inning guy

        am i correct in supposing that the data does consider the effect of a “successful” bunt eliminating the possibility of a double play when the runner is on first? am i also correct in supposing that the efficacy of the squeeze play is considered to be a different issue?

        thanks

      • paperlions - Feb 24, 2014 at 3:44 PM

        Yeah, the analyses just addressed the question “Is a successful sac bunt a good play?” Ignoring the fact that there are plenty of unsuccessful attempts that are common. Essentially, have a guy on 1st with 0 outs >>>> having a guy on 2nd with 1 out….and having a guy on 2nd with 0 outs is better than having a guy on 3rd with 1 out….the only exception being when you need only 1 run to win.

      • raysfan1 - Feb 24, 2014 at 3:53 PM

        If you want to see the actual numbers, the article I linked above covers 25 years of data.

        Short version is paperlions is correct.

  20. doctornature - Feb 24, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    THIS is the essence of Ron Washington. Lash out with profanity, which is his strong suit.

    Hitting a singles hitter cleanup to protect Hamilton in the WS is another thing he did…well, he did it well, writing the name in the lineup. That it cost the Rangers the WS in 2011 because he went with his ‘gut’? Look at him! His ‘gut’ is non existent, no wonder it backfires all the time lol.

    Strategy is a word he doesn’t understand, but he can curse for 20 minutes without repeating himself.

    As a representative of the Rangers, he is the worst profane clown in MLB, which says a lot. Daniels is probably looking for a reason to let him go, and I back that 100%. Without a contract extension, he is on the hot seat. Lame ducks panic, and players won’t listen, especially to Washington, who demands NO accountability from them. I predict he will be fired if the Rangers flounder to start the year.

    • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 24, 2014 at 6:32 PM

      Line up protection sins? Really? This is 2014. Get real. Also:
      http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/02/24/the-rangers-extend-ron-washingtons-contract-through-2015/

  21. chacochicken - Feb 24, 2014 at 1:31 PM

    Prior to this no person, sentient being, or artificial intelligence has uttered “Mike Scioscia is a genius”

    • paperlions - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:25 PM

      I am sure that this has been stated ironically on a number of occasions.

      • chacochicken - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:53 PM

        Alright, perhaps. So I’ll qualify my statement “with sincerity”.

  22. chinahand11 - Feb 24, 2014 at 1:43 PM

    I imagine Ron knows when to call for a sacrifice bunt and when not to do so. He was correct to a point; who are these reporters asking stupid questions anyway?

  23. sandrafluke2012 - Feb 24, 2014 at 1:48 PM

    Al campanis right?

  24. scatterbrian - Feb 24, 2014 at 2:12 PM

    “Mike Scioscia dropped 56 sacrifice bunts on his club, the most in the league, and his team finished 78-84,” Washington continued.

    FTFY Ron.

  25. Robert - Feb 24, 2014 at 3:26 PM

    2 two time World Series loser, can’t take correction. Waiting for the announcement of the new Texas Rangers Manager in the coming weeks.

    Adios Ronnie.

    • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 24, 2014 at 6:33 PM

      Ahem:
      http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/02/24/the-rangers-extend-ron-washingtons-contract-through-2015/

      • Robert - Feb 24, 2014 at 10:10 PM

        Ahem:

        1.That doesn’t mean he cant be fired. 2. I didn’t know Ron Washington had a worshipper?

      • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 24, 2014 at 10:14 PM

        Sure. Why not? winningest manager that team has ever had. I wish my team had someone that good at the helm. And fire him for what? Guiding his team to the post season 3 times, WS twice? That’s grounds for dismissal? strange world if it is

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