Here We Go Round The Bases

By / March 5, 2009 / Spring Training

We all enjoy a good home run. It’s the greatest way to score runs. It’s exciting.

It gives a player a chance to, not only show the other team up, but to show off strength, power. It is a player’s way of saying, “Is that all you got?”

Yet, swinging for the fences is not always a good thing. It leads to a higher strikeout rate. It leaves men on base.

There was one thing that Willie Randolph did try instill into the Mets players that, to this day, I still think is great and smart baseball. That is the ability to play small ball.

It appears Jerry Manuel feels the same way. This is probably the only thing that will be carried over from the Willie-era. With good reason.

Truth be told, I was getting a little tired of watching these guys trying to swing like they wanted the ball to go to the next borough.

Sometimes you have to think on a smaller scale because that is what will get the job done in late innings. Trying to play hero by going grand is not always, well, grand.

Singles are just as good as doubles and triples. Sometimes even better. They keep the inning going. It gives other players a chance to hit the ball, get on base and score more runs.

These guys are not going to always be able to hit a home run.

Manuel has been experimenting with different hitting drills during Spring Training and the team seems to be taking well to them.

Players, like Luis Castillo, are actually getting hits. Even Brian Schneider is doing his thing.

If this team can continue on doing the little things in the late innings when they are behind in the game, this team has the potential to go all the way.

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Tanya

1 Comment

Ed Leyro

I agree with you 100%. Why is it that so many hitters have high batting averages with the bases loaded? It’s because men on base rattle pitchers. Obviously, when there’s no one on base, a pitcher only has to concentrate on the hitter. Not so with men on base. If a batter hits a home run, the pitcher can go right back to focusing completely on the next hitter. If the same batter gets a base hit, now the pitcher has his mind on two things. Let’s hope the players listen up and try for more line drives than swinging for the fences. It might lead to bigger innings and bigger leads, which in turn will lead to less dependence on the bullpen.

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