Fernando Tatis Jr.'s grand slam vs. MLB unwritten rules: Whose side are you on?
San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr., one of the most exciting rising stars in baseball, hit his first career grand slam Monday night against the Texas Rangers.
After the game, he apologized.
Because, of course, baseball’s almighty unwritten rules were broken.
See, the Padres were up 10-3 with one out in the eighth inning. The bases were loaded. Tatis had worked a 3-0 count against Rangers pitcher Juan Nicasio.
And Tatis swung for the fences for his second home run of the night.
His blast capped a 14-4 victory, but a lot of folks in Globe Life Park in Arlington were not thrilled with Tatis’ actions. Pitcher Ian Gibault, who relieved Nicasio following the grand slam, threw behind Padres slugger Manny Machado with his first pitch. Rangers manager Chris Woodward later said of Tatis’ actions: “I don’t think we liked it as a group.”
Gibault was suspended for three games and Woodward for one by MLB on Tuesday. Gibault is appealing his suspension and Woodward will serve his today.
Padres manager Jayce Tingler wasn’t thrilled about Tatis’ actions either, saying: “We’re not trying to run up the score or anything like that” and “It’s a learning opportunity” and “He’ll grow from it.”
Tatis said after the game Tingler informed him he had missed a take sign on the pitch.
Corey Seager and his older brother Kyle, who plays on the Seattle Mariners, made history during the Dodgers’ 11-9 win on Monday.
“I told him right away that was on me,” Tatis said. “I didn’t look in.”
The son of longtime major leaguer Fernando Tatis Sr. added: “I’ve been in this game since I was a kid. I know a lot of unwritten rules. I was kind of lost on this. ... Those experiences, you have to learn. Probably next time, I’ll take a pitch.”
Judging from the response on social media, most people — even current and former players — think Tatis shouldn’t change a thing.
Hey @tatis_jr listen up:— Trevor Bauer (@BauerOutage) August 18, 2020
1) Keep swinging 3-0 if you want to, no matter what the game situation is
2) Keep hitting homers, no matter what the situation is
3) Keep bringing energy and flash to baseball and making it fun
4) The only thing you did wrong was apologize. Stop that.
Fernando Tatis keep playing hard and playing great, it’s a pleasure to watch you play, love your success and the Padres rise to be a winner. Keep leading the way. It ain’t easy to hit Hrs. Keep bringing energy you have to the game, we need players like you. An All Star— Reggie Jackson (@mroctober) August 18, 2020
So you take a pitch...now you're 3-1. Then the pitcher comes back with a great setup pitch...3-2. Now you're ready to groundout into a double play. Everyone should hit 3-0. Grand Slams are a huge stat. @tatis_jr https://t.co/4D3ilsD9Sh— Johnny Bench (@JohnnyBench_5) August 18, 2020
We were close to not having baseball at all this year. Yet here we are pissed Tatis Jr hit a Grand Slam.— Lane Adams (@LA_Swiftness) August 18, 2020
Swinging in a 3-0 count should not be against any rules, no matter the score.— Collin McHugh (@Collin_McHugh) August 18, 2020
Before a game I would always look to see what % a guy swings 3-0. If it’s over 20%, it means I can’t just groove one.
The guys who will never “give you a pitch” at the plate are the toughest AB’s.
3-0 counts rule 😒😒 you just have to pitch better if you don’t want that to happen I never see that rule and I take my self as an example because I’m the king🤴🏽🤴🏽of 3-0 counts 🤷🏻♂️🤷🏻♂️ https://t.co/TkMDDOCIkX— Eduardo Rodriguez (@eduardorod5) August 18, 2020
I’m more impressed Tatis jr has 11HRs in 25 games, we should be pumping this kid up! Promote MLB, stop the negative BS!— Rob Dibble (@robdibble49) August 18, 2020
I don’t follow unwritten rules...— CountOnAG (@Amir_Garrett) August 18, 2020
My 2 cents on the Tatis grand slam on a 3-0 count in the 7th with the game already out of hand:— Ben Verlander (@Verly32) August 18, 2020
This isn’t little league. This is guy’s livelihoods. Every hit, every RBI, every HR matters. You don’t like it.... pitch better.
Dear @tatis_jr,— Matt Lisle (@CoachLisle) August 18, 2020
1. Congrats on your first career grand slam.
2. Keep swinging 3-0 if you enjoy winning and success.
3. Ignore the haters and don’t apologize for it.
4. Keep doing what you’re doing. It’s good for the game. pic.twitter.com/0nSl6AhTC0
I found it OUTRAGEOUS that Tatis even brought a bat with him to the plate with such an insurmountable lead!!!!!— John O'Connell (@jacko2323) August 18, 2020
Is there anything dumber in sports the “unwritten rules of baseball”?— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) August 18, 2020
Instead of celebrating an incredible talent like Tatis Jr., they’re making him apologize for annihilating a 3-0 pitch. Ridiculous. How about ... throw a better pitch? pic.twitter.com/w7SLXazcgr
I’m sorry...has no one in the history of baseball ever come back from a 7-run deficit???? This could be the single most ridiculous criticism I have ever seen when it comes to “unwritten rules” in baseball. @tatis_jr don’t change a thing!!! You are the Star this game needs! https://t.co/yerp97FLnA— Ryan Ruocco (@RyanRuocco) August 18, 2020
I covered Hall of Famers Tony Gwynn and Trevor Hoffman. I’ve witnessed #padres and #Padres games since 1954. Still a short sample size, but Fernando Tatis Jr. the most exciting player I’ve ever seen in a #Padres uniform. Keep swinging away. Damn to all those “unwritten rules.”— Bill Center (@billcenter) August 18, 2020
What do you think?
Pick a side!— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) August 18, 2020
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