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June 06, 2003

There's alot being said and written about the Sammy Sosa corked bat incident, and I'm not sure what to think about his guilt or "innocence". But it shines a spotlight on one aspect of the game that I've always had issues with: The unreasonable value placed of the Home Run and those who hit alot of them.

Home runs are just not that significant a part of the playing of the game. Their importance is inflated out of proportion to their real contribution to winning. Under many circumstances a Single can score almost as many runs. Statistically there is no correlation between teams with alot of home runs, and teams with alot of wins.

And its fan appeal is really pretty simple minded. A home run is not really all that exciting. The runs it bats-in can be exciting, but no more so than the 2RBI single.

Hank Aaron, who knows a little bit about home runs, said that he didn't think it was the most exciting play in baseball, he thinks that the Triple is. I agree.

To Aaron's list of plays more exciting than the home run I'd add, any throw to home plate, and the catcher's throw to 2nd base to stop a stolen base. Each of these are routinely more interesting than most HRs.

Back in the old days they knew. In the early days of baseball, hitting the ball out of the park was a BAD thing. Players were penalized if they hit it over the outfield fence. Now I'm not suggesting that we return to that. But I do wish that fans would get some perspective and give ALL of baseball's intricacies their proper due.

Posted by jghiii at June 6, 2003 09:28 AM
Posted by: Mr Peabody on June 6, 2003 07:09 PM

Spoken like a guy who never got to home base in high school.

Posted by: Dave on June 10, 2003 12:33 PM

Well, not that I am a baseball fan, I am not!, infact I think it is the most boaring televised sport in the world, but I have to agree with Jack on what would seem exciting about the game.


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