Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Suck It, Jeff Brantley

Tonight. Diamondbacks 5, Reds 3. Brandon Lyon, pitching in the bottom of the ninth, gives up back-to-back singles to start the inning, bringing up Edwin Encarnacion. After a few inevitable bunt attempts inevitably failed, Encarnacion worked the count to 2-2. Here's the conversation leading up to the next pitch, between the play-by-play man (who I believe is Thom Brenaman), and color man (who I'm 99% sure is Jeff Brantley):

TB: "See that's the problem when you ask a guy who has never bunted..."
JB: "Take him out of the game!"
TB: "Well..."
JB: "If he can't bunt, take him out of the game..."
TB: "If you believe in the bunt in this situation..."
(zoom in on Dusty Baker)
JB: "You're at home, you have to tie the game..."
TB: "But again, that's a by-the-book kind of thing. I don't know if there's anyone on that bench you're gonna bring in... for Encarnacion."
JB: "This guy is NOT a clutch hitter. He is not a clutch hitter."
TB: "Well his numbers... would be contrary to that."
JB: "He is not a clutch player."
TB: "2-2 pitch..."
(Encarnacion hits a 3-run walk-off home run)

Brantley did laugh afterwards and say he stood corrected, but still. That's what you get for clinging to antiquated beliefs in the existence of "clutch" instead of ripping Dusty for calling for the bunt in the first place. For the record, I actually jumped out of my seat when Encarnacion made contact - I've never been so happy to see an announcer proven wrong.

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