GIF: Francisco Liriano, unenthusiastic hitter and runner
During his recently completed minor-league rehab assignment, Pirates lefty Francisco Liriano flashed no fewer than two tools on one play.
What follows can be considered an example of what is called "aesthetically displeasing baseball." It happened back in late April, but it's making the rounds today, possibly because Francisco Liriano -- the main offender -- made his 2013 major-league debut on Saturday.
Anyhow, during Liriano's recently completed minor-league rehab assignment, the heretofore AL-lifer was forced to wield a bat. See for yourself ...
As for what Liriano does to the ball, we need a new, made-up verb to describe it. It was a liner, but he didn't line it. He didn't so much hit it or strike it or smite it or even "make contact." What he did was ... blarp it. Yes, Liriano blarped the ball, which is the batting equivalent of falling off the toilet, in the vicinity of the first baseman. The first baseman then traps the ball and goes home with it. Runner is safe at the plate, largely because the gods wanted to see what happened next.
Liriano, that unapologetic blarper, doesn't realize until long after he should've realized that the first baseman didn't catch his ... blarp. So he "runs." The catcher, noting that Liriano's haste very much calls to mind a veteran major-league pitcher who's spent his life in the DH league and is now on minor-league rehab assignment, makes a casual toss to first. So casual is his toss that Liriano, who manifestly has no interest in being safe at first, is safe at first.
There are moments in this world when the scales fall from the eyes and universal adoption of the DH kind of makes sense. This has been one such moment.
(Wink of CBS eye: Andrew DeWitt)
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