Fifth infielder

A fifth infielder is the rare instance in baseball when a team may elect to bring in an outfielder to play the infield. This is usually done when the game is tied in the bottom of the ninth or an extra inning, the home team has a runner at 3rd base with fewer than two outs. Normally with a runner on 3rd with less than two outs, a manager will usually have the infield playing in, as to cut down a runner trying to score. Bringing the infield in is a typical strategy used late in games, when a potential tying, go-ahead, winning or crucial insurance run is at 3rd base with less than two outs. In cases like this, if a ball is hit right to an infielder, the infielder usually has a chance to throw out the runner trying to score. However, any ground ball not hit at an infielder will usually have a good chance to score the runner, plus the batter reaching base safely, versus if the infield plays back. When the infield plays back, it does make it more likely for the run to score, but the infielders are more likely to get the batter out via a ground out.

However, in an instance where if the runner at 3rd base scoring ends the game immediately, a team may elect to have a fifth infielder, as to decrease the chances of a groundball getting through. The drawback is that it decreases the chance of an outfielder getting to a potential fly ball that may result in a play at the plate, however, any fair fly ball hit deep enough is good enough to end the game.

For scorekeeping purposes, whatever position a player is listed as in the box score is the number they get assigned. For example, if a left fielder moves in to play the third base position, and a ball is hit to him, and he throws to the catcher to get the out, the play is recorded as 7–2.

Examples

In 2012, in an Opening Day game between the Toronto Blue Jays and Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, in the bottom of the 12th, with the score tied 4–4, the Indians loaded the bases with one out. Manager John Farrell of the Blue Jays decided to take out left fielder Eric Thames and bring in veteran infielder Omar Vizquel (who won 11 Gold Gloves in his career) to play at second base, being the pivot of a potential double play. Sure enough, pitcher Luis Pérez got Asdrúbal Cabrera to ground into the inning ending double play, 6–4–3, although Vizquel was not involved in the double play. The Jays ended up winning 7–4 in 16 innings, which was the longest Opening Day game in MLB history.[1]

Later in 2012, on September 13, 2012 in a game vs. the Tampa Bay Rays and Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards in Baltimore, Maryland, with the game tied 2–2 in the bottom of the 13th, the Orioles loaded the bases with no one out. Rays manager Joe Maddon took out left fielder Sam Fuld to bring in infielder Reid Brignac to play in the middle of the infielder. Rays pitcher Chris Archer ended up getting Robert Andino to ground into a force at home plate before striking out Matt Wieters and Nate McLouth to get out of the jam. The Orioles ended up winning 3–2 in 14 innings.[2]

In 2014, on August 29, 2014 in a game vs. the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres at Petco Park in San Diego, California, with the game tied 2–2 in the bottom of the 12th, the Padres loaded the bases with one out. With pull hitter Seth Smith at the plate, the Dodgers elected to play with 5 infielders, bringing in outfielder Andre Ethier to be the 5th man. In an unusual instance, they had 4 men play on the right side of the infield, and it paid off, as pitcher Kevin Correia would get Smith to hit a ground ball to the right side with a force at the plate, preventing the run from scoring. The Padres ended up winning the game on the very next batter, as Yasmani Grandal singled home Yangervis Solarte with the typical 4 man infield for the game winner.[3]

See also

References

  1. ^ Toronto Blue Jays at Cleveland Indians Box Score, April 5, 2012, Baseball-Reference.com, Retrieved August 05, 2017
  2. ^ Tampa Bay Rays at Baltimore Orioles Box Score, September 13, 2012, Baseball-Reference.com, Retrieved August 05, 2017
  3. ^ Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego Padres Box Score, August 29, 2014, Baseball-Reference.com, Retrieved August 05, 2017
2008 World Series

The 2008 World Series was the championship series of Major League Baseball's (MLB) 2008 season. The 104th edition of the World Series, it was a best-of-seven playoff between the National League (NL) champion Philadelphia Phillies and the American League (AL) champion Tampa Bay Rays; the Phillies won the series, four games to one. The 2008 World Series is notable because it is the only Fall Classic to involve a mid-game suspension and resumption (two days later).

The Series began on Wednesday, October 22, and (after weather delays had postponed the end of Game 5) concluded the following Wednesday, October 29. The AL's 4–3 win in the 2008 All-Star Game gave the Rays home field advantage for the series, meaning no more than three games would be played at the Phillies' stadium Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies won their second championship in their 126-year history to bring the city of Philadelphia its first championship in 25 years (since the 1983 NBA Finals). This was the first postseason series lost by an MLB team based in the state of Florida; previously, the Rays and Florida Marlins were 8–0 in post-season series. Additionally, both the Phillies' World Series wins have come against a team making their World Series debut (in 1980, they beat the Kansas City Royals).

The Phillies advanced to the World Series after defeating the Milwaukee Brewers and the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL's Divisional Series and Championship Series, respectively. The team won its position in the playoffs after its second consecutive NL East division title. This was the Phillies' first World Series appearance in fifteen years. The Tampa Bay Rays advanced to the World Series after defeating the Chicago White Sox and the Boston Red Sox in the AL's Division Series and 2008 American League Championship Series.

2016 Boston Red Sox season

The 2016 Boston Red Sox season was the 116th season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished first in the American League East for the first of three consecutive seasons with a record of 93 wins and 69 losses. In the postseason, the team was swept by the American League Central champion Cleveland Indians in the ALDS.

Art Houtteman

Arthur Joseph Houtteman (August 7, 1927 – May 6, 2003) was an American right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball who played for 12 seasons in the American League with the Detroit Tigers, Cleveland Indians and Baltimore Orioles. In 325 career games, Houtteman pitched 1,555 innings and posted a win-loss record of 87–91, with 78 complete games, 14 shutouts, and a 4.14 earned run average (ERA).

Known on the sandlot for his pitching motion, Houtteman was signed by scout Wish Egan in 1945 at 17 years of age. He was recruited by major league teams, and joined a Tigers pitching staff that had lost players to injuries and World War II. After moving between the major and minor leagues over the next few years, he was nearly killed in an automobile accident just before the 1949 season. Houtteman rebounded from his injuries and went on to win 15 games that season and made his only All-Star appearance in the following year.

He played three more seasons with the Tigers, then was sold to Cleveland, where he pitched for the pennant-winning Indians during their 1954 season. After losing his starting job, he played two more seasons with the Indians before he was bought by the Orioles, and he finished his final season in Major League Baseball with them. Houtteman ended his baseball career in the minor leagues and became a sales executive in Detroit. In 2003, Houtteman died at the age of 75.

Beanball

"Beanball" is a colloquialism used in baseball, for a ball thrown at an opposing player with the intention of striking them such as to cause harm, often connoting a throw at the player's head (or "bean" in old-fashioned slang). A pitcher who throws beanballs often is known as a "headhunter". The term may be applied to any sport in which a player on one team regularly attempts to throw a ball toward the general vicinity of a player of the opposite team, but is typically expected not to hit that player with the ball. In cricket, the equivalent term is "beamer". Some people use the term, beaner, though that usage is discouraged because of the negative connotations associated with that usage.

Ben Zobrist

Benjamin Thomas Zobrist (; born May 26, 1981), nicknamed Zorilla, is an American professional baseball second baseman and outfielder for the Chicago Cubs of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays/Rays, his first MLB club and where he spent the majority of his career, and briefly for the Oakland Athletics and Kansas City Royals. Zobrist has played in three World Series, winning the last two becoming a two-time World Series champion in consecutive seasons of 2015 with the Royals and 2016 with the Cubs. Zobrist was the 2016 World Series Most Valuable Player. He is one of seven players in MLB history to have won back-to back World Series championships on different teams, the other six being Jake Peavy, Jack Morris, Bill Skowron, Clem Labine, Don Gullett, and Ryan Theriot.

A versatile defender and a switch-hitter with a high walk rate, he has played roughly half his innings at second base, and has also spent significant time at shortstop and various outfield positions. Thus, he has often been referred to as a "super utility player".

Bud Daley

Leavitt Leo "Bud" Daley (born October 7, 1932), is a former professional baseball player who pitched in the Major Leagues from 1955–1964.

Leavitt was his father's name. Leo was for St. Leo from his mother's Catholicism. He was called Bud because his mother was an only child and she always wanted a child like her cousin, Buddy Walker. As a player Daley made his home in Long Beach, California. He was successful in public relations and a skilled speaker. In the offseason he once appeared in seventy-two towns in six states.Daley was a knuckleball pitcher. who threw curves of two different speeds. He became an All-Star pitcher in 1959 and 1960 for the Kansas City Athletics. During that two-year period, Daley won a total of 32 games, and was 3rd in the American League with 16 wins in 1960. In June 1961, he was traded by Kansas City to the New York Yankees, becoming an impact pitcher as the Yanks won the 1961 World Series over the Cincinnati Reds.

Daley was purchased by the Cleveland Indians from the Sacramento Solons of the Pacific Coast League on August 18, 1955. The purchase price was not revealed. Daley received offers from five other major league clubs. He signed with the Indians because of his friendship with Bob Lemon, whose children Daley used to babysit for.He dropped his first major league start at Briggs Stadium in a 6-2 loss to the Detroit Tigers. Harvey Kuenn hit an 8th-inning home run in a game in which the Tigers reached Daley for nine of ten hits in the first six innings. Daley was optioned to the Indianapolis Indians on July 4, 1956. On September 7 he was one of 7 players recalled from the American Association farm team.On March 31, 1958 Daley was traded, along with Gene Woodling and Dick Williams, to the Baltimore Orioles, for Larry Doby and Don Ferrarese.

On April 18 Daley was traded to the Athletics for pitcher Arnie Portocarrero.Daley put together a 4-game win streak in 1959. On June 6 he beat the Orioles 5-1, for his 5th win of the season. He conceded five hits to Baltimore, and afterwards, had allowed only a single run in his previous four games. Casey Stengel selected Daley as one of seven pitchers

he picked for the American League All-Star team on July 2. Daley pitched a 5-hitter against the Orioles on July 21. The 8-1 win would have been a shutout except for a homer by Walt Dropo, which Daley gave up with two out in the 9th inning. Kansas City earned its 6th straight victory with a 3-0, 4-hitter, thrown by Daley against Boston, on July 25. For the 7th place Athletics Daley achieved a 16-13 record with a 3.17 ERA in 1959. On July 29 Daley was sidelined with an infected knee, which had hurt while sliding. His record was 11-6. He gained his 12th win against the Washington Senators with relief help from Tom Sturdivant. Daley concluded the 1959 season with a 16-13 record.Bob Cerv hit two home runs which assisted Daley in stopping a four-game winning streak by the Detroit Tigers, in May 1960. He earned his 10th victory of the season in June with an 11-7 decision over the Boston Red Sox. He yielded 7 earned runs, 4 of them on 2 home runs and a run scoring single by Ted Williams. Daley suffered his 16th setback against the Tigers on October 2, in a 6-4 loss. He had an equal number of wins.He was traded to the New York Yankees after being relegated to the Kansas City bullpen during the 1961 season. The move impaired his effectiveness as a pitcher. Frank Lane was responsible for trading Daley to the Athletics and then to the Yankees.

Fourth outfielder

In baseball, a fourth outfielder is a backup outfielder, who does not have the hitting skills to regularly play in the corner outfield, but does not have the fielding skills to play center field; for these players, this often leads to playing time that has been called "erratic and unpredictable". Often, fourth outfielders are outfield prospects who have not settled on one outfield position when arriving in the Major Leagues, veteran players seeking additional playing time to extend their careers, or part-time position players who double as designated hitters.A recent example would be Gerardo Parra of the Milwaukee Brewers in 2011 and 2012. Considered among the best defensive outfielders and a Rawlings Gold Glove Award winner in 2011, Parra was employed among all three outfield positions during the 2012 Major League Baseball season.In contrast, the term fifth infielder does not refer to a backup or reserve infielder, but to a defensive shift where a fielder from the outfield is brought into the infield, leaving a team with only two players in the outfield.

Hitting for the cycle

In baseball, hitting for the cycle is the accomplishment of one batter hitting a single, a double, a triple, and a home run in the same game. Collecting the hits in that order is known as a "natural cycle". Cycles are semi-rare in Major League Baseball (MLB), having occurred only 329 times, starting with Curry Foley in 1882. The most recent example was accomplished by Jonathan Villar of the Baltimore Orioles on August 5, 2019, against the New York Yankees.The Miami Marlins are the only current MLB franchise who have never had a player hit for the cycle.

Justin Ruggiano

Justin Marshall Ruggiano (born April 12, 1982) is an American former professional baseball outfielder. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays / Rays, Miami Marlins, Chicago Cubs, Seattle Mariners, Los Angeles Dodgers, Texas Rangers New York Mets and San Francisco Giants.

Protested game

A protested game occurs in baseball when a manager believes that an umpire's decision is in violation of the official rules. In such cases, the manager can raise a protest by informing the umpires, and the game continues to be played "under protest." An umpire's judgment call (such as balls and strikes, safe or out, fair or foul) may not be protested.

Ray Schalk

Raymond William Schalk (August 12, 1892 – May 19, 1970) was an American professional baseball player, coach, manager and scout. He played as a catcher in Major League Baseball for the Chicago White Sox for the majority of his career. Known for his fine handling of pitchers and outstanding defensive ability, Schalk was considered the greatest defensive catcher of his era. He revolutionized the way the catching position was played by using his speed and agility to expand the previously accepted defensive capabilities for his position. Schalk was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1955.

Switch hitter

In baseball, a switch hitter is a player who bats both right-handed and left-handed, usually right-handed against left-handed pitchers and left-handed against right-handed pitchers.

Tris Speaker

Tristram Edgar Speaker (April 4, 1888 – December 8, 1958), nicknamed "The Grey Eagle", was an American professional baseball player. Considered one of the best offensive and defensive center fielders in the history of Major League Baseball (MLB), he compiled a career batting average of .345 (sixth all-time). His 792 career doubles represent an MLB career record. His 3,514 hits are fifth in the all-time hits list. Defensively, Speaker holds career records for assists, double plays, and unassisted double plays by an outfielder. His fielding glove was known as the place "where triples go to die."After playing in the minor leagues in Texas and Arkansas, Speaker debuted with the Boston Red Sox in 1907. He became the regular center fielder by 1909 and led the Red Sox to World Series championships in 1912 and 1915. In 1915, Speaker's batting average dropped to .322 from .338 the previous season; he was traded to the Cleveland Indians when he refused to take a pay cut. As player-manager for Cleveland, he led the team to its first World Series title. In ten of his eleven seasons with Cleveland, he finished with a batting average greater than .350. Speaker resigned as Cleveland's manager in 1926 after he and Ty Cobb faced game fixing allegations; both men were later cleared. During his managerial stint in Cleveland, Speaker introduced the platoon system in the major leagues.

Speaker played with the Washington Senators in 1927 and the Philadelphia Athletics in 1928, then became a minor league manager and part owner. He later held several roles for the Cleveland Indians. Late in life, Speaker led a short-lived indoor baseball league, ran a wholesale liquor business, worked in sales and chaired Cleveland's boxing commission. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1937. He was named 27th in the Sporting News 100 Greatest Baseball Players (1999) and was also included in the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.

Unassisted triple play

In baseball, an unassisted triple play occurs when a defensive player makes all three outs by himself in one continuous play, without his teammates making any assists. Neal Ball was the first to achieve this in Major League Baseball (MLB) under modern rules, doing so on July 19, 1909. For this rare play to be possible there must be no outs in the inning and at least two runners on base, normally with the runners going on the pitch (e.g., double steal or hit-and-run). An unassisted triple play usually consists of a hard line drive hit directly at an infielder for the first out, with that same fielder then able to double off one of the base runners and tag a second for the second and third outs.In MLB, a total of fifteen players have fielded an unassisted triple play, making this feat rarer than a perfect game. Of these fifteen players, eight were shortstops, five were second basemen and two were first basemen. The Cleveland Indians are the only franchise to have three players achieve the feat while on their roster: Neal Ball, Bill Wambsganss and Asdrúbal Cabrera. The shortest time between two unassisted triple plays occurred in May 1927, when Johnny Neun executed the feat less than 24 hours after Jimmy Cooney. Conversely, it took more than 41 seasons after Neun's play before Ron Hansen performed the feat on July 30, 1968, marking the longest span between unassisted triple plays. The most recent player to make an unassisted triple play is Eric Bruntlett, accomplishing the feat on August 23, 2009. Only Neun and Bruntlett executed unassisted triple plays that ended the game.

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