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Tues, Aug 14, 2001

Analyzing Bob Brenly’s “Unwritten Rules of Baseball”

Comparing Bob Brenly and Ty Cobb may seem like comparing fruits to nuts, but only one of them can be right about baseball's rules, written or unwritten.

by Luscious Rosenbaum

Davey Lopes says Rickey shouldn’t steal when his team is ahead, Bob Brenly says Ben Davis is a ‘meany’ for ruining Curt Schilling’s perfect game. Apparently, there are “unwritten rules of baseball.” Did you know that? Davey Lopes sure didn’t: as a player he stole a base in seven different games when his team was blowing the opposition out. Well, at any rate, we decided to attribute these “unwritten rules” to Bob Brenly and see how they compare to a potentially higher authority on the game.

Bob Brenly

Ty Cobb

Rules Followed

Unwritten Rules of Baseball

Rules of Baseball


9 year career as catcher; (starter for 5yrs)

career .247 hitter

20+ years as outfielder;

led league in slugging 7 times, once hitting five home runs in two games.

led league in hitting 11 times;

career .367 hitter (record)

what if: You’re hitting against a pitcher throwing a perfect game?

I would swing and miss three times and then tip my cap to him. I wouldn’t want to ruin things for him by getting a hit.

I would shorten my swing to get a base hit or bunt or try to get hit by cursing at the pitcher. It’s not really a perfect game if you don’t make them earn it.

what if: The opposing pitcher throws chin music at you and you face him again 2 innings later?

I would take a stance further away from the plate. I wouldn’t want to get hit by the ball.

I would lay a bunt down the first base line, with the intention of shredding up the pitchers legs and arms with my cleats as he tries to field the ball. The strike zone may belong to him, but the baseline is mine.

what if: After you’ve reached first base, your teammate hits a double play ball?

I would slowly skip towards second base and then get out of the second baseman’s way so that he could throw my teammate out.

I would slam into the second basemen and try to kick the ball out of his glove and into the outfield. Playing hard makes the other side work harder and can force mistakes.

what if: Your team is up 10 runs and you’ve reached first base?

I would stand motionless on first base until one of my teammates gets a hit.

I would steal second, then third, and then home. It doesn’t stop being a game once one side is up. Why would fans bother watching a guy who quits in the middle of the game?

what if: You’re at bat with your team down 10 runs?

I would try to get on base with a walk or hit.

Beat and berate my teammates because they suck. Men playing a boy’s game need to be yelled at when they don’t get the job done.

what if: You’re at the plate when the opposing catcher drops his mask throwing out your teammate, who was trying to steal second?

I would pick his mask up and give it to him.

I would stomp on the mask and kick it into his dugout. Just because the catcher has a good arm doesn’t mean I have to be in love with him.

what if: You get heckled by a fan while playing your position?

I would ignore him and concentrate on what the opposing hitter is doing.

I would beat the shit out of that guy and then concentrate on what the opposing hitter is doing. I’d expect fans to do the same if I heckled them.

Conclusion: The unwritten rules of baseball suck. They all seem to involve giving courtesy to the opposition. It’s almost as if a ballplayer must always keep the other side’s feelings in the back of his mind. That kind of mentality dulls the competitive edge. We called Cobb’s play “The Rules of Baseball,” because we think the aim of the sport should be winning and keeping the game interesting – especially since it has no time limit. Competition is doing everything you can to win and destroying the opposition’s spirit. This makes the loser stronger, because he must digest his bile and come back for another day. It also motivates him to play better the next time around.

We’re sick of the idiots claiming they know what these unwritten rules are. Maybe Brenly knows the "Minor League Rules of Baseball," having played in more games at that level. Whereas, others, like Davey Lopes and Frank Robinson (who punishes the beaning of batters every other day), who were once good players, have now conveniently decided to forget what it was like to compete. Maybe old age has made them soft or too many baseballs to the head is the cause of this loss of memory (we’ll excuse the latter).

Luscious Rosenbaum
does not support the personal life of Ty Cobb, but urges everyone to be an asshole on the field.
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Issue #12


After World Series, Brenly Calls Yankees ‘Bush League'

Diamondbacks Await Parade in Canyon of Canyons




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