Baseball’s unwritten rules are stupid. We seem to agree on that. But the Texas Rangers and pitcher Shawn Kelley didn’t just enforce one of those silly rules on Thursday night in a 13-6 loss to the Twins, they did it when they had absolutely no right to do so and, thus, made themselves look foolish.
The situation: The Twins were leading 13-5 with one out in the top of the ninth inning in Arlington, when Jake Cave singled to right field on a 3-0 pitch. Dick Bremer, the Twins’ play-by-play voice on Fox Sports North, immediately noted that Cave couldn’t have been given the green light to swing and Cave seemed to indicate to Kelley that he had lost track of the count. The next hitter, Max Kepler, went to 3-0 before Kelley hit him on the shoulder with a fastball as obvious payback for Cave’s sin.
— Tom Froemming (@TFTwins) August 16, 2019
OK, now that we’ve cleared that up, let’s get to why Kelley should be suspended for 25 games and why the Rangers should get a call from MLB officials today.
Did anyone else see the Rangers rally against Twins pitcher Devin Smeltzer in the sixth inning?
Smeltzer, in relief of starter Michael Pineda, gave up a lead off homer to Hunter Pence to make it 12-4.
Willie Calhoun then singled to right, Rougned Odor doubled to deep right-center and Calhoun tried to score but was thrown out at home. Odor went to third on the play and was thrown out at home when Logan Forsythe hit into a fielder’s choice. After Jose Trevino singled to center, Delino DeShields doubled to deep left, scoring Forsythe, but Trevino somehow got himself thrown out after ove running third base.
Yes, the Rangers committed all three outs on the bases.
The Rangers easily could have been within striking distance of the Twins without those stupid decisions on basepaths, but instead only scored two runs to pull within 12-5.
After that debacle, no one on the Rangers had any right to enforce any rules, written or unwritten. If Kelley had a problem with anyone it should have been his teammates who ran themselves out of the game. You don’t then get the right to decide that you and your team cares three innings after making a joke of the game.
That’s just embarrassing.