Re: Aggressive Baserunning
posted at 4/2/2013 3:32 PM EDT
In response to SpacemanEephus' comment:
In response to Sheriff-Rojas' comment:
In response to Beantowne's comment:
In response to Sheriff-Rojas's comment:
These new look Red Sox were very aggressive on the basepaths in Game 1 with generally good results so far. My favorite maneuver was Gomes's run in the ninth where he scored from second on an infield hit. The only play I questioned was Ellsbury's triple in the sixth. It was a close play at third, and to lead off the inning, there was not that greater of an advantage to being on third compared to secord. However, even though he was thrown out at home later, running on contact, this was the right risk in that situation, as he would have been safe on most balls hit in the infield.
Aggressive baserunning is exciting to watch and can keep the defense on edge. Sometimes, however, it may produce more excitement than netting results (see Mike Scioscia). Still, this is this is the right team for it, lacking the usual core of big boppers in the lineup. They may need to manufacture runs this year to scrap out what they need to win ballgames.
Risk/reward, sounds like your in favor of them being aggresive on the bases, yet critical of Ellsbury for doing just that? In my book his being aggressive is a great sign and hopefully manifest itself in his stealing a few more bases this year.
There's a fine line between aggressive baserunning and recklessness. As I stated in my post, I'm critical of Ellsbury for stretching the double into a triple even though he was safe, and I support the decision to break for home on contact even though he was out. Aggressiveness should still be smart agressiveness based upon the game situation (number of outs, fielders, batters coming up, lead or deficit vis a vis inning, opposing pitcher and bullpen behind that, baseball park, etc.). The triple was with nobody out with Ishiro handling the baseball and good bat control hitters due up (Victorino and Pedroia). The break for the plate was with one out.
Good points Sheriff. Ironically, or not so ironically since there is no intrinsic connection between fast base-running and good base-running, Ellsbury is by far the fastest guy of all the guys I mentioned as good baserunners on this club, but the worst base-runner. His speed actually gets in the way of him being smart out there.
I'm not sure I'd call Ellsbury a bad baserunner, but I'd agree that he is probably the least intelligent from the group you listed. By contrast, I always thought that Varitek was one the smartest baserunners I've ever seen in spite of his tortoise-like gait. Of course, Jason was intelligent in every aspect of the game. He possessed the highest baseball IQ I've ever witnessed.