Welcome to the postseason,
It’s a place where every move is magnified, particularly those that do not work out. And Mattingly had a few that did not work out Friday in the opener of the
Roll the dice here and it's not just the local fans and media watching. Scrutiny becomes national. More than ever, it is best to get it right, or at least get the outcome right.
The one move from Friday’s game that earned Mattingly the most criticism was his decision to pinch run Dee Gordon for
Wile E. Coyote never saw anything blow up in his face like it. Gordon never got a chance to steal and was erased on a force play. Then twice the replacement at first for Gonzalez --
Because if failed. Yet, as Mattingly repeatedly said, the entire reason Gordon is on the team is to pinch run, steal a base and make the difference in a tied or close game. Which, of course, is absolutely true.
The problem was that he ran for Gonzalez, the team's top RBI man and most consistent hitter.
But who exactly in the lineup would you run Gordon for? Not
If Gordon is only on the roster to pinch run for three guys, he shouldn't be on the roster.
The move failed because Gordon wasn’t driven in, which was the real problem the entire long night. The
"We drive those guys in, no one talks about it," said Mark Ellis.
It’s like Mattingly’s admittedly infuriating decision to have Uribe twice try to bunt with the winning run already on second base in the form of Puig in Game 4 of the division series against the
"Playoffs are so stupid, aren't they?" Mattingly remembered thinking to The Times' Dylan Hernandez. "Just crazy."