Monday, May 18, 2009


Yesterday, we heard this out of the PA announcer: “Batting third, your pitcher, number 21, Andy Sonnanstine.” We should have heard this out of the PA announcer: “Batting third, your designated hitter, number 3, Evan Longoria.”

No freaking way. A pitcher was batting third. I think Sonnanstine said it best when he said that the last time he hit third was in little league. This is a major mistake. This is inexcusable.

“But wait, the Rays won, so who cares?” This is a question that is going to be asked to anyone who dare unleash on Joe Maddon. My response is this:


The outcome of the game does not mask this glaring error in judgment. The fact that Sonnanstine picked Maddon up with a 2 out RBI double does not cover up the blunder. Even though the oversight happened when Sonnanstine, a career .385 hitter, was on the lineup card instead of Scott Kazmir, a career .125 hitter, this mistake is intolerable and should be treated this way. Hey Joe, were you drunk? Keep the bottles of wine for after the game, not before.

Joe Maddon has taken a bad rap for a few things this season. Many fans have blamed Maddon for losing a game to the Yankees when he shifted the outfielders in against Brett Gardner. Many called this act over-managing, too aggressive, and a mistake. To all of those people, I have to say that you are wrong.


When Joe Maddon shifts the defense, he does it for a purpose. He has studied numbers, and knows that when Brett Gardner hits the ball into the outfield, he generally does not have the power to hit the ball past a drawn in outfielder. In this incident, he was managing to win. I will not blame a manager for being aggressive, even if the act causes the Rays to lose.

If I refuse to point the finger at Joe Maddon when he makes an aggressive decision and the Rays still lose, I have to point the finger at the manager if he makes a mistake in a win. Mental mistakes kill me, whether they are made by players or coaches. The players did their job yesterday, the manager did not. He owes the players big. I can only imagine the criticism Maddon would be receiving if the Rays had lost yesterday. I think that criticism should be the same, even after a win.


The mental error is still the same. It’s a lineup card Joe, it’s not rocket science.

-The Rocket Scientist

1 comment:

Dustin Fridkin said...

I totally agree. As I mentioned in my post, this is the kind of sloppy, lazy nonsense for which a player would be benched. I dunno what the managerial equivalent of benching would be, but whatever it is, it ought to involve at least two things: first, a public shaming, and second, some kind of frustration resulting from being unable to do the job one normally does. I propose the following. Joe oughtta have to sit out a game, and, instead of managing, perform as Raymond. Of course, Maddon would not be allowed to wear the Raymond headpiece. Instead, facepaint and hair dye. That oughtta drill "attention to detail" into his head. I still can't believe we gotta talk about this.