Texas Rangers: Chris Woodward Likes Challenging ‘Unwritten Rules’
By Kenneth Nash
A day after questioning Fernando Tatis Jr.’s late-inning grand slam on a 3-0 pitch, Texas Rangers manager Chris Woodward ensures he’s for challenging ‘unwritten rules’ of baseball.
The Texas Rangers and their manager Chris Woodward have been all over the social media, baseball landscape on Tuesday after comments made by the Rangers’ skipper about one of baseball’s ‘unwritten rules’. Fernando Tatis Jr. of the San Diego Padres was the center of the discussion after hitting a grand slam off struggling Texas pitcher Juan Nicasio in the 8th inning of a 14-4 Padres win. The questions surrounding that grand slam, Tatis’ second homer of the game, stem from the game situation where the Padres led 10-3 and Tatis was in the midst of a 3-0 count with bases loaded.
After the game, Chris Woodward was upfront about his dislike for the decision to swing at a 3-0 pitch in a seven-run game but also noted that his dislike for the swing did not mean his perspective was the right one. After being the brunt of much social media disdain from the baseball world on Tuesday morning, Woodward appeared on the Ben & Woods’ Show on the KWFN-FM/97.3 The Fan (San Diego) radio network where he addressed his thoughts on the swing once again.
While talking to the hosts, the Texas Rangers skipper addressed the role that ‘unwritten rules’ play in the game of baseball in 2020. Woodward felt that the decision by Tatis to swing at the 3-0 pitch was “on the other side of the borderline” in terms of those unwritten rules. Woodward also noted in his conversation with Ben & Woods on 97.3 The Fan (San Diego) that he spoke with Jayce Tingler, the Padres manager, about the situation after the game.
Tingler of course was a long time member of the Rangers organization, first as a player, and most recently as Major League Player Development Field Coordinator, before taking the role as manager of San Diego this past offseason. After the game on Monday night, Tingler was asked about the at-bat by Tatis Jr. and gave his comments on what he thought probably should have happened in that situation.
In Woodward’s aforementioned interview with 97.3 The Fan in San Diego, he goes on to talk about how he views unwritten rules as a whole. Woodward attributes himself as “definitely a progressive mind when it comes to [unwritten rules]” and welcomes discussions about what should fall into that category. Woodward notes that he feels he has always been one to challenge what is considered ‘the right way’ to the play the game.
The Rangers manager is fairly clear that he thinks that swinging at 3-0 pitches is a smart move in the game of baseball because generally, a hitter will face a hittable pitch. However, Woodward continues to lean into the point that swinging 3-0 is always situational.
Be sure to check out the entire interview between Woodward and Ben & Woods in which Woodward goes further in depth on the situation and the role of ‘unwritten rules’ in the game of baseball.
The Texas Rangers and San Diego Padres will square off in the final game of this two-game series Tuesday afternoon at 3:05 PM.