Baseball’s unwritten rules struck again on Sunday, when Ian Desmond took a fastball to the hip on the first pitch of the sixth inning. Both the Nats and Mets’ TV announcers immediately suggested this was unwritten revenge for a pair of inside pitches to David Wright over the weekend, since the best revenge for a pair of inside pitches is giving the other team a free base.
“Wow. That wasn’t even close,” MASN’s F.P. Santangelo said upon watching a replay. “Usually when you get hit like that it’s a two-seamer that runs away from somebody, but that was a four-seam fastball BEHIND Desmond.”
Then, on the second pitch of the next at-bat, Desmond stole second, which is another unwritten rule thing. And before he even stood up, he was already staring down Mets pitcher David Aardsma, helping convey to the world that yes, this was in revenge for the revenge.
“That’s how you play the game right there,” Santangelo said. “He’s looking right at David Aardsma. You drill me, I’m stealing second. Tack an earned run on him. That’s old-school baseball. Watch the look after he gets up. He looks right at Aardsma as soon as he gets up off the bag, and they made eye contact. First thing he does is look right at Aardsma.”
“That’s great,” Bob Carpenter added.
“He steals the bag, pops up, a little eye contact,” Santangelo said on the replay. “That’s how you play the game.”
Sports are so weird.