The Minnesota Twins have company now in their campaign against people actually playing the game of baseball against them.
You’ll recall earlier this season, the Twins — citing an “unwritten rule” — were upset that a Baltimore Orioles player tried to get on base by bunting against the shift, in which a team moves players from one side of the infield to another, anticipating a player will try to pull the ball.
In essence, the Twins’ Brian Dozier disputed the decision by the player to have a strategy against his team’s strategy.
Last night, Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander joined Club Snowflake, when he took exception to White Sox thirdbaseman Tim Anderson broke up his no-hitter in the fifth inning (there should be an “unwritten rule about thinking no-hitters in the fifth inning are a big deal), celebrated and then stole second in a 5-to-0 game.
“He steals on 3-0 in a 5-0 game, that’s probably not great baseball,” Verlander tells the Houston Chronicle. “Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t, I don’t know. But he celebrated that, though. And it’s like ‘Hey, I’m not worried about you right now. It’s 5-0, I’m giving a high leg kick, I know you can steal. If I don’t want you to steal, I’ll be a little bit more aware of you. But I’m trying to get this guy out at the plate.'”
Anderson reached second on a botched throw and celebrated, but then Verlander picked him off second. And celebrated.
“Stealing third in a 5-0 game with two guys on in an inning where I was clearly struggling — I walked a guy on four pitches and went 1-0 to the next guy — and I pick you off on an inside move after the way he had kind of been jubilant about some other things, I was just as jubilant about that,” Verlander said.
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) April 21, 2018
“I’m not going to let the situation dictate what I do out there, I’m going to slow everything down and that’s what veterans can do — see the game, play the game, play the game the right way,” Verlander said.