Wednesday, September 09, 2009

I Hate the Strikeout

The strikeout in baseball is a useless out. For that reason, it used to be stigmatized. Obviously, those days are long gone. Stat heads now say things like, "hey, at least he didn't create two outs that at bat" or "they come with a player taking swings that lead to more productive contact." Both are bunk, but that runs counter to current popular opinion, so be prepared to be shouted down if you say so.

Sometimes it is the players themselves that drive me the most nuts, though. Take Adam Dunn, for instance:

But it depends on when you’re striking out. If you strike out with two outs and nobody on, who gives a [expletive]?

You should, you dumb [expletive]. At least with runners on and less than two outs, it can at least be justified that you didn't hit into a double play. With two on and two out, you should be doing everything in your power not to strike out. By striking out, you give your opponent a free out. What a good hitter should be doing in that scenario is attempting to force the issue by doing anything they can to continue the inning. It is pressure on the defense that leads to rallies. Yes, sometimes even with two outs.

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