Most particularly from members of the St. Louis Cardinals, who lost Game 3 of the National League Conference Series (NLCS) 3-0 to the Los Angeles Dodgers. It was the Dodgers first win in the series with the Cards up 2-1 and the next two games played in LA.
The unwritten rules of baseball, those archaic statutes that seem to have been handed down from the 19th century, were flouted by the 22 year-old Cuban refugee as he celebrated his first hit of the NLCS after being 0 for forever.
He celebrated what he thought was a home run that wasn't, and then showed off speed on the base paths not seen since Bo Jackson wore a baseball uniform. He landed on third with a standup triple and continued the celebration, playing to his team's dugout and the crazed Dodger fans waiving white mini-towels.
The problem with unwritten rules is that they are open to change without notice. Was Puig a bad boy because rookies are not entitled to act that way?
We've all heard the refrain, "Act like you've been there before." Since Puig is new to this major league stage you can't use that old chestnut.
The sting of "showing up the pitcher" or the other team as a whole seems to apply here, except that can happen without hand movements. No clapping or bat flipping is necessary. Even a stare or a spit in the wrong direction can get under the skin of the man on the mound or behind the plate.
Losing pitcher Adam Wainwright got cranky with media because a non-rookie, the Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez had his own mini-party after landing on second base.
A-Gon cracked a double scoring Mark Ellis for the first run of the game and the first for the Dodgers in the previous 22 innings of the NLCS. Gonzalez is not a rookie --- far from it.
Is Yasiel's behavior a disgrace because he slapped his hands together and pointed to the sky while on third base? Is it the bat flip after crushing a Wainwright pitch?
Anyone care to reflect on the antics of Big Papi, the DH of the Boston Red Sox when he gets a big hit in a big game, whether it's post-season or in-season?
Papi has his own bat flip maneuver as he admires his work that he thinks is sailing out of Fenway Park, then takes those big mits of his covered in batting gloves and claps when he reaches a base.It's just Papi being Papi, to paraphrase the saying created for Papi's former teammate Manny Ramirez, who created his own bat flip and HR stare technique.
Why not get into the pool with the NFL, which allows for celebrations but legislates them. That means written rules to allow the game officials to say what's fair or out of bounds.
The NFL is known as the No-Fun-League and yet it gave in when it realized that TD celebrations in the end zone were not disappearing anytime soon. The league identified the parameters of what is acceptable and all of a sudden, there were real written rules on the books.Football players are penalized for crossing the line, so they have no need to grumble and moan to media members about their opponents' victory dance moves.
Let's stop pretending that baseball players need to be stoic and reflect calm and manners used in church, rather than in an entertainment venue known as the baseball stadium.
Yes, this is entertainment and it is Los Angeles where Showtime at the Laker games began. One of those Showtime players is now part-owner of the Dodgers. In his first professional game as a rookie in 1979, that owner jumped into the arms of his team captain and celebrated like he had won the NBA Finals.
Talk about showing up the other team.
That man, Earvin "Magic" Johnson was sitting in the owner's box last night loving Gonzalez and Puig's energy and enthusiasm. Their team looked dead in the water and suddenly there was hope.
Either write the rules or stop the nonsense.