Yost kills Royals with awful ninth inning – SweetSpot Blog – ESPN

Hat Tip, again, to Nebraska for this link.

It looks like some Royals fans are not happy with Ned Yost.

Congratulations, Ned Yost, you just managed the worst inning of the season.

The situation: The Kansas City Royals trailed the Cleveland Indians 4-3 entering the top of the ninth. The Indians summoned closer Chris Perez from the bullpen, a guy who has been awful of late. In his previous 13 appearances Perez had faced 60 batters and allowed 18 hits — including four home runs — and four walks. In September, he’d pitched four innings and allowed eight hits.

Salvador Perez led off with a base hit to left field. Mike Moustakas walked on four pitches. Pinch-runners for both were on base. Lorenzo Cain, Jarrod Dyson and Alcides Escobar — the bottom of the order — were due up. You have a struggling pitcher who just walked a batter on four pitches. What do you do?

Here’s what you don’t do: Give Perez an out.

David Lough pinch-hit for Cain and sacrificed. Didn’t take a pitch. Didn’t make Perez throw at least one strike. He bunted the first pitch.

Look, it’s not just the sabermetric crowd who is anti-bunt. Managers have become anti-bunt, not sacrificing nearly as often as they used to. It’s a one-run strategy with minimal payoff in a world where more hitters than ever can drive the ball for extra bases or out of the park. A bunt may slightly increase your chance to score one run but it also decreases your chance for multiple runs. It’s a strategy from an era when singles were more common, but in this age of increasing strikeouts and declining batting averages, singles are less likely than ever to occur.

In this specific instance, though, why give an out to a pitcher who has been a train wreck of late? Why make him get only two outs in an inning instead of three?

You can read the entire post here.

“God, I love baseball.” – Roy Hobbs | The Natural


3 thoughts on “Yost kills Royals with awful ninth inning – SweetSpot Blog – ESPN

  1. I am anti-bunt, except for the following situations:
    1. Last at-bat with potential winning run on 2nd base and no outs.
    2. Simply bunting for a base hit, like when 3rd base is playing way back, or you can get one past the pitcher.

    Otherwise, in this age of baseball it’s a useless strategy. Most guys can’t bunt anyway. There are too many specialist pitchers nowadays that throw 95+ mph, and strikeouts are at an all-time high. Specific to the Royals situation, they have way too much speed to ever have the need to sacrifice anyone over. Just steal the base!!

    Yost will be fired because this team is getting ready to get to the next level, and like Leyland here, he isn’t the guy to take them there. Maybe not this year, but soon.

  2. I was reading stuff on Reddit, and the KC fans have been complaining about Yost all season. I guess nobody is happy with the manager unless they win.

  3. Remember this is the guy that got fired from a playoff chase in Milwaukee with 12 games left. Just in case you didn’t have the day off to watch KC &CLE….well the Royals STILL run AND hit and run. This weekend should be interesting….

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