Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Only a fun-hater wouldn't enjoy a no-hitter

I've had it.

I consider myself a "stathead." I love, to varying degrees, all of the little measurements that people a lot smarter than I am have come up with over the years. I love the fact that baseball fans, and baseball teams, act a lot more sensibly than they did 15 years ago, not necessarily because they are smarter, but because they have access to better information and better understand non-baseball concepts. The randomness in statistics is one good example.

As fans have becomes smarter regarding the inherent randomness, though, there's thing that's happened that I just cannot stand for. Every time there is a no-hitter, some smarty-pants commentators, particularly the type who use the insipid comment function on various websites, seem to feel the need to inform the rest of us that it was all "chance" or "luck" that a no-hitter happened. One such commenter, who I won't link to here, stated that a three-hitter is just as good as a game where a pitcher throws a no-hitter and allows two walks and a hit batsman. 

So what??

Seriously. Everyone knows that no-hitters require luck. Even the late Bob Feller, who the guy who invented the wheel would've considered "old school," stated as much. On the contrary, it's the luck involved in the no-hitter that makes them so cool. The confluence of good fielding, bad hitting, maybe a lucky call or fortunate bounce, and great pitching that results in the opponent having a "zero" in the H column is so awesomely cool that I can't understand why someone who likes baseball wouldn't be able to appreciate it.

So here's the deal. While I can't stand it when people tell others how they should enjoy something - it's one of my main pet peeves when a grouchy columnists at one of the dying newspapers around the country breaks out his annual "statheads and people who play fantasy sports aren't REAL fans like I am" rant - I'm going to go entirely against my usual inclination. If you don't like no-hitters, you're a fun-hating jerkface.

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