Jose Bautista does not need to “calm that down” and “respect the game”


Rangers reliever Sam Dyson is pretty good. Had a nice year (154 ERA+ in 75 appearances). He likely has a good future working out of bullpens around the league and, as far as any of us know, is a hell of a guy. Maybe a husband. Maybe a father. Good neighbor. Loyal lodge member. Let’s just grant him all of that and more, what with us really not knowing much about him.

Let us also say this about him: last night he was a big whiny baby who could have stood to take a few moments to gather himself and contemplate his shortcomings and general place in the world before spouting off.

You know what happened by now. Bedlam in Toronto following the crazy Russell Martin Shin-Soo Choo interference play. Fans going way over the line into Looneyville, throwing beer cans and the like. Amped up emotions for everyone in Rogers Centre, players included. And then, in the bottom of the seventh, a comeback capped by Dyson serving up a monstrous homer to Jose Bautista that, had it not been for the fine engineers and construction workers who built Rogers Centre, woulda blown the goddamn roof off the place.

Oh, and this:

Jose Bautista Blue Jays

This was A Moment. Actually, this was not just a moment, it was an iconic moment in baseball history, or at the very least soon will be. This was one of the game’s premier sluggers experiencing perhaps his greatest triumph, having shocked his team and nearly 50,000 screaming Blue Jays fans out of the confused funk into which they fell a half inning before, snapped them into an exuberant frenzy and carried them to the next round of the playoffs.

Sam Dyson, however, was not as impressed. He found this to be a good time for an etiquette lecture:

“Jose needs to calm that down, just kind of respect the game a little more. He’s a huge role model for the younger generation that’s coming up playing this game, and I mean he’s doing stuff that kids do in Wiffle ball games and backyard baseball. It shouldn’t be done.”

What a bunch of condescending, patronizing paternalistic nonsense. Who in THE HELL is Sam Dyson to tell Jose Bautista what he “needs” to do? What has Sam Dyson — for as wonderful a person as he may be — ever done or known to give him the right to tell a twelve-year veteran, six-time all-star, team leader and national icon — to two or three nations at this point — what should or shouldn’t be done? And even if he does have any standing whatsoever to lecture Bautista, which he sure as hell does not, how dare he offer up that most mindless, loaded of cliches: “respect the game?”

Bautista did not choreograph some elaborate touchdown dance here. He did not set out to insult the manliness or integrity of Sam Dyson or the Texas Rangers. He had just hit the second biggest home run in Toronto Blue Jays history and, for anyone younger than, say, 25, the biggest in living memory. Most definitely the biggest moment of his professional life. If you are the sort of person who thinks that such a thing cannot be celebrated, you should just give up trying to find happiness in life, consult an actuary about exactly how much time you have left until you die and optimize your investments accordingly. And please, as you do so, be sure your door is closed and your curtains are drawn because the very sight of such a joyless figure as yourself will bring the rest of humanity down.

Pressure + Triumph = Exuberance. If you find that equation troublesome or the concept behind it difficult to grok, you have challenges far beyond trying to get major league hitters out. If you think that some Kafkaesque, self-contradictory, thought and emotion-policing set of “game-respecting” rituals take precedence over it, you’re missing the very point of sports, entertainment and, maybe, even the concept of joy itself.

If such a set of beliefs is required for you to Respect The Game, find a different game. The rest of us will be over here marveling at one of the most exciting baseball moments we’ve ever experienced.

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Nationals blow 6-run lead, rebound to beat Phillies 8-7

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WASHINGTON (AP) Lane Thomas singled in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning and the Washington Nationals sent the Philadelphia Phillies to their fifth straight loss, winning 8-7 after blowing a six-run lead.

The defending NL champion Phillies have just five victories in their last 18 games and are tied with the Nationals at the bottom of the NL East at 25-32.

“We’ve got to overcome it,” Phillies manager Rob Thomson said. “We’ve got to play better, get consistent in all phases and keep moving forward.”

Alex Call drew a two-out walk against Connor Brogdon (2-1) in the eighth, stole second on a low pitch that catcher JT Realmuto couldn’t make a throw on and scored on Thomas’ single to right center.

“The way Lane’s swinging the bat, if you can get on second base, we can win the game,” Call said. “I look over and the ball’s in the dirt, he doesn’t catch it. Now I’m saying: ‘All right, Lane. Come on!’”

Kyle Finnegan (3-2) pitched 1 2/3 innings for the victory, stranding the tying run on second in the ninth.

Nick Castellanos homered twice, singled, doubled and drove in five runs for Philadelphia, which had scored just three runs in its past three games.

“There’s definitely a lot of positives as a group,” Castellanos said. “Showing some fight. It would have been really, really easy to lay down and allow the way the game started to be the way that it finished.”

Down 7-1 after four innings, Philadelphia tied it at 7 in the eighth. Brandon Marsh worked a nine-pitch walk against Mason Thompson leading off, and Drew Ellis singled with one out. Finnegan came on to face Kyle Schwarber, who hit a ground ball up the middle. Shortstop CJ Abrams fielded it behind it behind second base, touched second for one out, but threw wildly to first and Marsh came home with the tying run.

Castellanos’s second homer, a two-run shot to center in the sixth, pulled the Phillies to 7-3 and Marsh added an RBI single in the inning.

In the seventh, Schwarber doubled with one out and Bryson Scott reached on an infield single. Hunter Harvey came on and walked Bryce Harper to load the bases. Castellanos singled to center scoring two runs to make it 7-6.

Luis Garcia homered and Jeimer Candelario doubled twice and drove in three runs for the Nationals, who have won seven of 12.

Philadelphia starter Zack Wheeler, coming off eight shutout innings against Atlanta, allowed seven runs on eight hits in 3 2/3 innings.

“This one’s on me really,” Wheeler said. “Guys battled back. Just couldn’t finish it out. We know who we have in this room and what we’ve got to do.”

Josiah Gray gave up four runs on six hits in 5 1/3 innings for Washington.

Candelario doubled just beyond the reach of left fielder Schwarber to drive in the first of Washington’s two runs in the first.

In the second, Abrams hit a one-out drive to deep center that Marsh misplayed into a double. With two outs and two on, Candelario doubled off the wall in right center to make it 5-0.

Garcia ended Wheeler’s night with a solo homer in the fourth.

“When you come out the way we did, you’ve got to tack on,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez said. “It didn’t happen tonight, but we got one more than the other guys.”


Candelario is 9 for 26 (.346) with four doubles, a home run, nine RBIs, five walks, and seven runs scored in his last seven games.


Phillies: Thomson said RHP Taijuan Walker played catch Friday and there are “no worries about his next start.” In a four-inning outing against the Mets on Thursday, Walker’s sinker velocity averaged 90.6 mph, down from 92.7 mph for the season. His fastball, splitter and curveball velocity also dropped.

Nationals: OF Victor Robles (back spasms) took batting practice on the field for the first time since going on the injured list. … LHP Sean Doolittle (elbow) gave up a run on two hits and struck out two batters in 2/3 of an inning working his second straight night for Class A Fredericksburg.


Phillies: LHP Matt Strahm (4-3, 3.20) will start a bullpen game on Saturday.

Nationals: LHP MacKenzie Gore (3-3, 3.57) went seven innings and struck out a career-high 11 batters in his previous outing – a no decision against the Royals.

AP MLB: and