May 29th, 2005

Calvinball

Bend, Don't Break...

I used to play softball with a guy who made a habit of throwing his glove at line drives over his head. Oh, he made it look accidental, just letting the glove slide off as he leapt and extended his arm, but we all knew what he was doing. The thing is, if he ever had hit the ball, it would've been a disaster, something of which we could never quite convince him. Here's why:
Rule 7.05
Each runner including the batter runner may, without liability to be put out, advance_ (a) To home base, scoring a run, if a fair ball goes out of the playing field in flight and he touched all bases legally; or if a fair ball which, in the umpire's judgment, would have gone out of the playing field in flight, is deflected by the act of a fielder in throwing his glove, cap, or any article of his apparel; (b) Three bases, if a fielder deliberately touches a fair ball with his cap, mask or any part of his uniform detached from its proper place on his person. The ball is in play and the batter may advance to home base at his peril; (c) Three bases, if a fielder deliberately throws his glove at and touches a fair ball. The ball is in play and the batter may advance to home base at his peril.

The reason I bring it up is that last night the DBacks' Luis Terrero hit a high chopper just out of reach of the Dodgers' Duaner Sanchez, and Sanchez threw his glove at it, knocking the ball down. Terrero was awarded a hit, Sanchez a two-base error, giving Terrero a free pass to third, giving up what was essentially an infield triple. (Vin Scully reportedly had never seen the rule invoked before in 55 years of broadcasting games.) Terrero then scored on a ground out, after which Sanchez gave up a home run to the DBacks' pitcher, which tied the game at 4-4. Gio Carrara then walked in the winning run with no outs in the bottom of the ninth, and the Dodgers lost, wasting a good effort by Derek Thompson in his first major league start after being called up from AA. Feh.

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If Sanchez broke the rules, DePo merely bent them a little bit this past week. DePo was faced with a tricky situation when Antonio Perez was ready to come off the DL. The guy who needed to be sent to the minors to make room for him was Jason Grabowski, who was out of options. That means that if the Dodgers did send him down, they risked losing him to another team on waivers. (I don't know who'd want him, because I've never been impressed with Grabowski, and he's hitting .152 so far, but he's apparently one of DePo's favorites.) To get around this, Grabowski mysteriously came up with a sore shoulder, was put on the DL, and then was immediately given a rehab assignment in AAA. Very clever, our Mr. DePo. What happens when the rehab is done I don't know. Everybody else on the team, including the guys with options, like Repko and Edwards, are better players.

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The other DL news of note is that Paul Bako sprained his knee in a run down, so now Dioner Navaro is up with the big club.

Really having a hard time working up enthusiasm for the team lately. DT is annoying, because everybody over there seems to be jumping on the "Fire Jim Tracy" bandwagon, and the negativity during game watch and posts is something to see. Feh.