Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Adverse Reaction

You know my pet peeve. Advertisers who try to use baseball to appeal to baseball fans, but who clearly show their lack of knowledge about the game right there in their stupid ad. (Also proving that they couldn't even go through the trouble of having ONE baseball fan listen to the ad before it airs, just in case there's some egregious error.)

Today's example: Some insurance company that I've never heard of has this radio ad in which a woman describes a hectic day or whatever. You know, so you think, "Hey, they're all busy and stressed out and AMERICAN like me! I feel like they're talking about my life! Where to I sign up for this product or service?"

Anyway, the woman says something about a baseball game, and mentions a "walk-off triple." Do you know how hard it is to hit a walk-off triple? The batter would have to make it from home to third before the runner got from first to home. The runner has a lead off first, so this is quite hard, though possible if the hitter's a much faster runner than the man on first. But this is the winning run coming home. That guy is sprinting to the plate, and the throw is absolutely going home. So as the batter's rounding second, he's going to pull up before reaching third, as the throw won't be going to his base. And if they do throw to third, let's say, because the ball was hit to left field, the batter, knowing the runner is going home, isn't going to run right into an out at third, especially if there are two outs at the time, as the run wouldn't count if he was tagged before the other runner touched home.

The most likely way to get a walk-off triple would be on a very high fly ball to the right of center field that skims the wall, or drops in without the fielder being credited with an error. That way, the runner on first is held up near second base, and when the ball drops, he races all the way home, with the batter on his heels, arriving at third before the run scores. Even in this case, though, the batter would probably just stop at second, as you can't assume the runner will try to go home, and if he didn't, now there'd be two runners on third.

Okay, maybe the lady was talking about a Little League game, which would make one of the previous scenarios a little more likely, but still, terrible joba by that company.

And it's not like a "walk-off triple" is, like, this holy grail of baseball plays that you don't want to miss. It never happens! Do a Google search for "walk off triple": 2,500 results, which is really 70 when they eliminate all the "similar pages. "Walk off home run": 110,000 results. Do a news search and you'll see one walk-off triple of late, and it was in a kids' softball game.

It's like the old ad where the guy said if he won the lottery, he'd learn this dunk where he dunks the ball to his elbow, after doing a 360 or something. As if this is something you could practice, even if money did allow you to buy height and or jumping ability! Like it's something we all could do, if only we had the cash to pull it off. (That one was my dad's pet peeve commercial.)

Curt on the hill tonight, me in the stands.

I just imagine a really huge speed differential on the bases. Like, say you have Doug Mirabelli with four broken toes on first, and Jacoby Ellsbury with four Red Bulls in him at the plate. That would be fun to watch.

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Location: Rhode Island, United States