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Narron Benches Encarnacion, Should Bench Himself

Posted by Charlie Hustle on April 13, 2007

Jerry Narron benched 3B Edwin Encarnacion for not running out an infield fly after the first inning of Wednesday night’s 3-2 victory over the D-Backs.

That statement seems reasonable right? Most baseball fans and players still cling to the old-fashioned, unspoken rules… Run out every play – Pitcher should retaliate the next inning after a plunking – Don’t show up the pitcher after a home run – Shaving cream pie for rookie’s first post-game interview, etc.

So why does Encarnacion’s benching irk me so badly? Because if he’s benching our young third basemen, who clearly needs confidence after last year’s up-and-down season that included numerous errors, then he should look no further than his Left and Right fielders to ride the pines.

Can you imagine Narron benching Griffey, Jr. for not hustling? Cincinnati would be outraged. After all, it’s a scientific fact that if the guy runs at any more than 75% his leg will simply fall off. Not only does Griffey CONSISTENTLY not run out grounders, perhaps the greatest Center fielder of all time has been moved to Right for a 5’10” 180 pound hustling munchkin. Griffey’s bat is so slow, that as Bill Simmons put it, “It looks like a fisherman when he catches a fish, but the fish is too big and he kinda waivers then stumbles over the boat.” Everything about his game is slow. But he’s Griffey, so he gets a pass.

How about Adam Dunn? Quite some pop in the bat so far this season. Could you imagine benching Adam Dunn for one of his “Where’s Waldo” routines out in left when a ball careens off the wall and he becomes befuddled as to where it’s going to go. He looks like he has two left feet out there. I think Cincinnati would explode into riots if Dunn hit a mammoth home run in the first inning only to be taken out for the rest of the game because he pulled one of his classic “If I run half-speed, then it will look like it was going to be a hit anyway” efforts in left. Think about it… Have you EVER seen Adam Dunn dive for a ball? EVER?

So this brings me back to current mediocre manager Jerry Narron. So many of his decisions are mystifying that it frankly amazes me that this particular benching even made me blink twice. The fact of the matter is that if you’re going to run the team like he is, and overlook consistently poor defense and lack of effort by veterans, then how can you blame younger players for imitating what they see on the field? It’s not enough that he fucks with their psyche by platooning almost every position on the field and changing the batting order daily, now he is making it abundantly clear that the Reds veterans don’t play by the same “old-fashioned run everything out” rules as the younger players have to abide by. Even Mr. Hustle Ryan Freel said that he’s going to calm down on all the crazy dives to protect his body this year. So which way are you going to have it Jerry?

Well here’s one vote for not giving a hoot in hell if E.E. runs out an infield fly. It’s not a vote for not hustling – it’s a vote for consistency, something Narron has apparently never heard of.

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One Response to “Narron Benches Encarnacion, Should Bench Himself”

  1. Lindsay Carter said

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