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Now the Padres and Dodgers are beefing over the unwritten rules

The Padres were on the receiving end of the most notable “unwritten rule violation” of 2020, when Fernando Tatis Jr. was scolded by Rangers manager Chris Woodward for swinging at, and hitting a grand slam on a 3-0 count, when the Padres had a seven run lead earlier this season.

Tatis’ own manager, Jayce Tingler, had given Tatis the take sign and agreed the swing was inappropriate. Curiously, he didn’t feel the same way when on Monday, when Padres centerfielder Trent Grisham pimped a game-tying home run in the sixth inning off Clayton Kershaw, that drew ire both from the Dodgers bench and Dodgers manager Dave Roberts after the game.

“I don’t mind guys admiring a homer,” Roberts said. “Certainly it’s a big game, big hit. Really like the player. But I just felt that to kind of overstay at home, certainly against a guy like Clayton, who’s got the respect of everyone in the big leagues and what he’s done in this game, I just took exception to that. I think there’s a certain respect you give a guy if you homer against him.”

Perhaps Roberts has changed his tune over the years. Either that, or he must deeply regret the three-run home run he admired off of Curt Schilling in 2003.

“We don’t worry about it,” Padres manager Jayce Tingler said. “We worry about our guys and our team and it was a moment in the game. It was a huge hit, it got us fired up and we have fun. We play the game right, we respect the game, but we’re going to have fun and we’re going to pull for one another. To us, that’s all it is.”

It would seem that Tingler cares more about game situation than what a player actually does when analyzing the unwritten rules. Tatis simply hit a baseball, but shouldn’t have because the Padres were winning a game by a lot. Grisham made a show out of his blast, both in the batter’s box and as he rounded the bases, but that was appropriate because it tied the game.

As always, when you try to parse the unwritten rules, the seem to make even less sense than at first glance.


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