Nobody Knows Anything

“Nobody knows anything,” William Goldman famously said of Hollywood. I think the same is true of Baseball: Nobody knows anything.

  • Hit it up the middle.
  • Hit it on the ground.
  • Hit it in the air.
  • Hit it where they ain’t. (Wee Willie Keeler)
  • Swing hard in case you hit it. (My Little League coach and a million others)
  • You can’t hit what you can’t see. (Walter Johnson)
  • He’s got to concentrate on that pitch.
  • You can’t think and hit at the same time. (Yogi)
  • You can’t hit and think at the same time. (Yogi)
  • How the hell can you think and hit at the same time? I never said it. (Yogi)
  • That’s a wormburner.
  • Baltimore Chop.
  • Frozen rope.
  • Can o’ corn.
  • Duck snort.
  • Line drive clothesline.
  • Chuck and duck.
  • Snow cone.
  • Pitch him inside.
  • Pitch him on the corners.
  • Chin music.
  • Make your strikes look like balls and your balls look like strikes. (Greg Maddox)
  • It helps if the hitter thinks you’re a little crazy. (Nolan Ryan)
  • It’s outa the park.
  • It’s outa here!
  • That’s foul!
  • That’s fair!
  • That’s on the line.
  • That’s off the pole.
  • That’s over the fence.
  • That’s over the wall.
  • That’s off the wall.
  • That’s in the corner.
  • Two-thirds of the earth’s surface is covered by water; the rest is covered by Garry Maddox. (Harry Kalas)
  • He dropped it!
  • He’s pitching out of a jam.
  • He’s looking tried.
  • He’s finished.
  • Stick a fork in him; he’s done.
  • He’s getting (killed, shellacked, shelled, murdered… )
  • It ain’t over till it’s over. (Yogi)
  • This is a real slugfest.
  • This is a real pitchers’ duel.
  • This is a hitting contest.
  • He muscled that one…
  • A walk’s as good as a hit.
  • Go with the pitch…
  • Good cut.
  • Bad swing.
  • Fooled on that one…
  • He didn’t get fooled on that one.
  • Just missed that one.
  • He didn’t miss that one!
  • He missed a bad pitch.
  • He missed a good pitch.
  • He’s seeing the ball well.
  • He’s not seeing the ball well.
  • He took a good cut at that one.
  • Didn’t have a good cut at that one.
  • That’s a home run!
  • That’s an out.
  • That’s a home run in any other ball park.
  • Easy out.
  • Kiss that one goodbye.
  • He had his best stuff today.
  • Didn’t have his best stuff today.
  • He’s looking confused at the plate.
  • He’s seeing everything today.
  • Good hitting beats good pitching every time, and vice versa. (Yogi)
  • It’s deja vu all over again. (Yogi)
  • I never blame myself when I’m not hitting. I just blame the bat and if it keeps up, I change bats. (Yogi)
  • His stuff is flat.
  • His stuff is electric.
  • He’s hitting the corners.
  • He’s lobbing it in there.
  • He’s steaming it in there.
  • The Eephus pitch!
  • He’s trying to overthrow.
  • He hits in the clutch.
  • He doesn’t hit in the clutch.
  • He just missed it.
  • Even if he caught it he couldn’t have thrown him out.
  • That’s gonna get the job done.
  • That’s not gonna get the job done.
  • He needs a hit bad.
  • He needs a strike bad.
  • He needs a strikeout.
  • He needs a popup.
  • He walked him.
  • It’s up the middle.
  • It’s down the line.
  • Is there a more valuable (pitcher, hitter, pinch hitter, catcher, first baseman…) in the game today?
  • Busted bat, base hit.
  • Dying quail.
  • A moonshot!
  • He broke his wrists.
  • He didn’t break his wrists.
  • A perfect bunt.
  • A bad bunt.
  • He can’t bunt.
  • They’re playing in.
  • They’re playing shallow.
  • They’re playing deep.
  • They’re playing no doubles.
  • They’re playing the corners.
  • They’re playing for the bunt.
  • They’re playing for the sacrifice.
  • They’re playing for a ground ball.
  • They’re playing for a double play.
  • They’re playing for an out.
  • They’re playing for the big hit.
  • He’s a doubles machine.
  • He’s a strike machine.
  • He’s a singles hitter.
  • He’s all or nothing.
  • He a heavy hitter.
  • He’s a hit or miss hitter.
  • He’s a classic lead off hitter.
  • He’s a classic clean up hitter.
  • He’s five tools.
  • He’s a classic knuckleballer.
  • One base at a time.
  • Grand slam!
  • Small ball.
  • He cleared the bases.
  • He left the bases loaded.
  • He popped it up.
  • He can’t buy a hit.
  • He can’t make an out.
  • He struck out the side.
  • He can’t buy a strike tonight.
  • He couldn’t strike out my grandmother.
  • He couldn’t hit my grandmother.
  • He’s a gamer.
  • He’s a horse.
  • He’s carrying the team on his shoulders.
  • He’s not on his game.
  • He’s painting the corners.
  • He’s wild.
  • He’s wild in the strike zone.
  • He’s unhittable.
  • He owns this guy.
  • He struck out swinging.
  • He struck out looking.
  • He struck out again.
  • He never strikes out.
  • An error.
  • ANOTHER error.
  • What other sport not only kept a stat as cruel as the error but posted it on the scoreboard for everyone to see? (Chad Harbach, The Art of Fielding)
  • Exit Velo
  • Launch Angle
  • WAR
  • VORP
  • OPS
  • Spin Rate
  • BABIP
  • WHIP
  • Can’t anybody here play this game? (Casey Stengel in re: the Mets)
  • Cold as ice…
  • He is HOT!
  • This team has fallen asleep.
  • This team is waking up.
  • YANKEES SUCK! YANKEES SUCK! YANKEES SUCK! (Boston fans)
  • The Yankees are my daddy. (Pedro Martinez)
  • It’s getting late early. (Yogi)
  • You know, i was in New York on business so I had to listen to the Yankee announcers call the games, and one of them kept talking about “regression to the mean” and at first I thought here’s this guy just making excuses for this team’s that just really not doing all that well right now. Fucking Yankees, but then i thought, no, well, he’s right: .330 hitters who aren’t historically .330 hitters just can’t keep up that pace, they slack off or whatever and eventually return to being the .260 or .270 hitters they historically have always been. But then how do you account for guys who don’t regress to the mean? Guys in the game sometimes DO hit .330 when everything in their past says they shouldn’t be able to do that. (And of course in today’s game we assume they’re on some steroids.) Maybe, but maybe they redefine, for a time at least, their “mean.” And the same goes for teams: this team should be like 80-80 but maybe everything goes right for them and they end up 95-65 and win the Division. Nobody knows anything is what I think, especially when we think we know everything because we have stats on everything. Maybe everybody regresses to the mean except when they don’t. (Self-described “Red Sox Nation fan” calling in to a TV talk show, best as I can remember his rant.)
  • “The United States Office of Strategic Services sent former major league baseball catcher and OSS agent Moe Berg to attend the [Werner Heisenberg] lecture carrying a pistol, with orders to shoot Heisenberg if his lecture indicated that Germany was close to completing an atomic bomb. Heisenberg did not give such an indication, so Berg decided not to shoot him, a decision Berg later described as his own ‘uncertainty principle'”. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Werner_Heisenberg)
  • That’s baseball, Susan. (David Cone)

 

 

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