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Marlins tell Jarred Cosart: “Don’t swing the bat!”

Aug 13, 2014, 10:47 AM EDT

jarred cosart getty Getty Images

After coming over from the Astros at the trade deadline Jarred Cosart tweaked his back while swinging and running out an infield single in his Marlins debut on August 1, so when he returned to the mound last night 11 days later manager Mike Redmond had specific instructions: Don’t swing the bat.

Redmond wanted to make sure the 24-year-old right-hander wouldn’t aggravate the back injury while at the plate, so Cosart struck out looking on five pitches in his first at-bat and struck out looking on three pitches in his second at-bat, never taking the bat off his shoulder.

“I didn’t want him taking any swings that were going to hurt him,” Redmond told Joe Frisaro of MLB.com. “Had we had him in a situation where we needed to score a run, we probably would have had to hit for him, knowing he hadn’t taken any swings. Fortunately, we didn’t get in that situation.”

The plan worked, too, as Cosart tossed seven shutout innings against Adam Wainwright in a Marlins victory over the Cardinals. And two of the Marlins’ three runs came when No. 8 hitter Donovan Solano homered off Wainwright with a base open that could have been used to walk him before pitching to the non-swinging Cosart.

  1. ezthinking - Aug 13, 2014 at 10:53 AM

    Reason 4,682 why the AL and the DH is better than the NL and pitchers hitting.

    • Old Gator - Aug 13, 2014 at 11:37 AM

      Reason 4,683 why the designated hitter breeds halfassed, incomplete ballplayers who can only play part of the game. It also reminds us that turning pitchers into inert lumps on the bench when they ought to be working on being all around ballplayers makes them subject to injuries when freal baseball calls upon them finally to prove that they’re not useless at half of the game.

      • jwbiii - Aug 13, 2014 at 11:52 AM

        The average DH fields better than the average pitcher hits, so the “incomplete player” argument holds no water.

      • mkd - Aug 13, 2014 at 12:19 PM

        In all of baseball a total of 255 players have served as a Designated Hitter at some point in 2014. Here’s a breakdown of the number of different DHs used by American League teams this year alone:

        BAL (8), BOS (5), CHW (8), CLE (13), DET (7), HOU (13), KC (8), LAA (12), MIN (15), NYY (12), OAK (13), SEA (15), TB (14), TEX (16), TOR (14).

        It’s almost as if it’s a myth that teams rely on some one-dimensional permanent DH and don’t simply use it as a rotating hitting spot to maximize platoon advantages and give guys a day off now and then. But please tell us more about how Mike Trout, Robinson Cano, Josh Donaldson, Adrian Beltre, Yoenis Cespedes, Carlos Gomez, Desmond Jennings, Adam Jones, and Jonathan Lucroy are incomplete ballplayers who can only play part of the game.

      • kevinbnyc - Aug 13, 2014 at 2:00 PM

        Does that make Adam Dunn among the more complete players out there? He can hit, field (kind of) AND pitch!

      • Old Gator - Aug 13, 2014 at 7:12 PM

        No, I’m talking about the pitchers who become incomplete ballplayers because they don’t bat. The fact that everyday players might get to spell themselves by being spared the vicissitudes of playing defense every so often isn’t the point. And that’s not even resurrecting the issues of how tedious and boring designatedhitterball is. It’s got less strategy than a mammoth hunt. Yawn. I wonder why the designatedhitterball league even bothers having managers.

      • mkd - Aug 13, 2014 at 9:28 PM

        So now you’re saying National League pitchers are somehow complete players because every five days they wave a bat around helplessly and lay down a bunt or two? That’s preposterous.

        And that’s not even resurrecting the issue of how tedious and boring it is to watch National League managers make “strategic” decisions so fixed and predictable a Commodore 64 could be running the team and you’d never know the difference. Yawn.

  2. miguelcairo - Aug 13, 2014 at 10:59 AM

    He’s got a great arm. I think his move to the NL will only help his case.

    • scoochpooch - Aug 13, 2014 at 11:25 AM

      lack of quality hitting in NL should help him out.

  3. drewsylvania - Aug 13, 2014 at 12:21 PM

    Once again: I’ll take pitchers batting seriously when the teams do. Otherwise, keep the DH.

  4. ud1951 - Aug 13, 2014 at 12:24 PM

    Wainwright walk Solano to get to the pitcher? Now that’s funny right there, I don’t care who you are.

  5. mattinglyschmidt - Aug 13, 2014 at 12:48 PM

    As an advanced metric, Cosart’s 4.0 pitches per plate appearance would place him 23rd in all of baseball (if he qualified) – tied with Jason Kipnis.

  6. mattinglyschmidt - Aug 13, 2014 at 12:48 PM

    Plus he could have always bunted.

    • chadjones27 - Aug 13, 2014 at 1:16 PM

      That’s the one thing I never figured out with pitchers. Why they aren’t very good at bunting. You see some many of them stabbing at the ball and fouling it off or popping it up.
      I’m not a big fan, ok, I’m not a fan at all, of the DH, but, watching pitchers fail to lay down a bunt only adds fueld to the DH fire.

      • Old Gator - Aug 13, 2014 at 2:07 PM

        I agree, the DG should be locked up in a wicker man – it lends to a primitive mindset akin to megalithic ritual – and immolated while fans of real baseball hold hands in a circle around it and sing “Take Me out to the (Real) Ballgame.”

      • Old Gator - Aug 13, 2014 at 2:07 PM

        I agree, the DH should be locked up in a wicker man – it lends to a primitive mindset akin to megalithic ritual – and immolated while fans of real baseball hold hands in a circle around it and sing “Take Me out to the (Real) Ballgame.”

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