Blog Entry

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

Posted on: March 2, 2012 1:12 pm
 
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Let the debate begin anew over whether it's time for the National League to adopt the designated hitter.

Pittsburgh's A.J. Burnett is out two to three months with a broken orbital bone suffered while bunting in the batting cage. And while he waits for the healing to begin, plenty of folks are chiming in, using him as Exhibit A for those who think it's time pitchers stopped batting altogether.

That's all well and good. But don't tell that to Reds pitcher Homer Bailey. The Cincinnati right-hander batted .282 with a .300 on-base percentage in 45 plate appearances last summer. He knocked home two runners.

"I think pitchers should hit in both leagues," Bailey says.

As for Burnett's injury ... hogwash, says Bailey.

"You have position players that foul balls off their feet and get hurt," Bailey says. "It's just a freak deal. You could have a position player do the same thing.

"Typically, pitchers are better bunters."

He's right. As ever, there remains no reason why pitchers should be such non-athletes that they're hopeless cases at the plate. Pitchers who can handle a bat, even to get a bunt down, help themselves. That's an advantage. Why take that advantage away?

"If it's that much of a problem," Bailey said of Burnett and the idea of pitchers injuring themselves batting, "then how come position players get hurt fouling balls off of their legs? They suffer torn hamstrings running to first, or torn knees.

"Look at what happened to Ryan Howard last year."

Howard this spring continues rehabbing the Achilles he tore during the last play of the Phillies' NLCS against St. Louis.

Sunblock Day? Nah. Jackets needed Friday morning as the temperature continues to struggle to get past 60 and a stiff wind blows.

Likes: Copies of USA Today's daily crossword puzzle and Sudoku puzzle stacked on a table in the middle of the Cincinnati clubhouse and several Reds stopping by to pick one up to work it. Those Reds, they're thinkers. ... Eric Davis in Reds camp, as usual, as an alumni coach. He loves everything about it, but don't tell him that the players keep him young. "I look younger than most of these guys in here," Davis says, and he's right. ... The jerk salmon at Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville restaurant in Glendale. Surprisingly tasty. ... Heard a tune by The Hollies in a restaurant the other day, which reminded me of how unappreciated The Hollies are today. So much good stuff -- Bus Stop, Carrie Anne, Just One Look, (Long Cool Woman) In a Black Dress, On a Carousel, Under My Umbrella, The Air That I Breathe. They're celebrating their 50th anniversary this year, too, just like the Beach Boys and the Rolling Stones. ... The burgers at Five Guys. ... Learning that the Monkees actually have a direct link to David Bowie. Turns out, the latter's real name was Davy Jones. Yep, same as the Monkees' legend who passed away this week. So as an aspiring musician in the 1960s, knowing he couldn't be known as Davy Jones, he became David Bowie.

Dislikes: The photo cameras at red lights and, especially, the ones designed to catch speeders. They had a bunch of those on the freeways in Arizona a couple of years ago, but they're gone now. Someone told me one of the problems was the gun-toters here periodically would shoot the cameras on the freeways to put them out of operation. No idea whether that's true. But I sure like to think it is.

Rock 'n' Roll Lyric of the Day:

"If you don't eat your meat
"You can't have any pudding
"How can you have any pudding
"If you don't eat your meat?"

-- Pink Floyd, Another Brick in the Wall

Comments

Since: Sep 12, 2006
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:30 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

With the logic used by the baseball purists -- NFL players like Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, etc. should not only be the quarterback, but they should also be on punt coverage and playing on defense.  That is how it was done growing up and back in the early days of the NFL.  The reason they don't -- THEY WERE DRAFTED TO BE A QUARTERBACK.

This logic is completely flawed.  In the NFL, all players only play one side of the ball, QBs, linemen, LBs, whatever.  Special Teams is completely different and that's almost always backups anyways.  In MLB, all players play both offense and defense, except for the AL pitchers and DH's.  The rule should apply to all players like it does in every sport.  Either have the pitchers hit, or each team could choose to have both an offense and defensive lineup.  And since the 2nd will never happen, which it shouldn't, the AL should drop DH's. 



Since: Jan 29, 2007
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:29 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

Time for DH or time for him to learn how to bunt. Back to Little League for him.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MYdBkOGVZ3k



Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:28 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

the MLBPA is never, ever going to allow baseball t eliminate the DH, there are too many high salary players at that position.  for all of those so called NL purist who think pitchersd should bat get over it.  With houston moving to the AL, and interleague play being everyday, the NL has to either get with the times and install a DH, or accept the fact that they will be playing at a huge disadvantage when the games are in AL parks. 



Since: Aug 2, 2010
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:27 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

The pitchers who are decent hitters can really help themselves and be a big difference between winning and losing.
Daniel Hudson of Arizona, in his first full season in the National League, hit .277 and led NL pitchers with 18 hits and 14 RBI, far ahead of the next best RBI total by a pitcher, which was 8 by Jake Westbrook. 



Since: Oct 21, 2006
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:25 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

no DH = Chess

DH = Checkers


Both fine games, but I prefer mine to require a bit more thinking.




Since: Oct 22, 2008
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:16 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

If there's not a pressing drive to change the NL's mind to adopt the DH, just leave it at status quo...besides, there's nothing funnier to watch than AL pitchers trying to bat in NL parks...all in all it's just "another brick in the wall"...



Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:13 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

i would like to see both leagues play by the same rules......whether it is with or without the DH.




Since: Sep 8, 2006
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:12 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

Having pitchers hit is one of the more interesting things in baseball. The strategy surrounding the decision to pull a pitcher who might not be struggling for a better hitter when runners are in scoring position, adds a whole other dimension to the game. Plus pitchers who can swing a bat and not hurt themselves, perhaps even contribute offensively, become much more valuable. Overwhelmingly I feel they should keep it. People who don't agree can just watch the AL and gripe when the World Series comes around.



Since: May 29, 2009
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:12 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

The DH should be banned by Congress.  It's just a roster spot for an aging veteran who can't play the field any longer.  Every fielder should be in the batting order.  Ban the DH!
I love the arguments from the NL fans regarding the DH.  I was trying to find online what the overall BA for pitchers in the NL was in 2011.  The only one I could find was from 2008.  As a whole, NL Pitchers hit .139 in 2008.  THAT is baseball???  what that is, is a joke.

Teams don't invest millions of dollars on pitchers to go up to the plate and watch 3 or 4 pitchers go by them or flail helplessly at the ball.  They invest millions on pitchers to get hitters out at the plate.

I can see baseball purists wanting to keep the game as it was played in the 1900's, but there is an ENORMOUS difference between now and then.  Baseball is a multi-billion dollar business now.  Players aren't going and getting jobs in the offseason to make ends meet, they are being paid obsurd amounts of money to perform the skills they were drafted for.

With the logic used by the baseball purists -- NFL players like Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, etc. should not only be the quarterback, but they should also be on punt coverage and playing on defense.  That is how it was done growing up and back in the early days of the NFL.  The reason they don't -- THEY WERE DRAFTED TO BE A QUARTERBACK.

No pitcher should be forced to hit, as that is not why they were drafted and not why they are making millions of dollars.  All it is doing is putting unneeded risk on million dollar investments.  I'm sure the Pirates are ecstatic that a guy they just traded to pitch for them will now be out 8-12 weeks collecting a paycheck because he broke his orbital bone bunting.  Absolutely ridiculous -- time to join the rest of the world in the 21st century. 



Since: Jun 24, 2008
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:12 pm
 

Don't tell Homer Bailey pitchers shouldn't hit

The DH is the best thing that's happened to baseball in the modern era.  It improves the game from every perspective.  It improves the offense AND the defense at the same time.  It replaces an awful hitter with a very good one and also does not force your team to use a good hit/poor field player in the field...you can use a better fielder.  It raises the quality of the game as both the pitching and defense have to step up to face a stronger lineup. 

Plus, the DH was part of the game going back to the 19th century.  In fact, then you could DH for any player, not just a pitcher.  Also, the DH does not preclude pitchers from hitting.  If a pitcher is a good enough hitter, then he can hit.  It's about time that the NL joins the rest of the baseball world, and their own minor league teams, btw, and OKs the DH. It's way past time.


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