Fit to Be Tied? Or Suspended?
My friend Steve Ware asks:
If a game gets rained out when tied after 9 innings, do
they play it again from scratch or pick up where they left
How can Pete Rose be overrated? How can you overrate the
guy with the most hits? Did you see the way George Will
described him in Ken Burns' documentary?
Good question. I believe you are referring to yesterday's Braves-Giants game that was postponed with a tie score in the 10th. I thought about it and argued with myself one way and then the other. I remember distinctly a game the Phillies played when I was a kid that got suspended. The pitcher at the time of the suspension had been traded by the time the game had been resumed, and the guy for whom they traded the pitcher ended up driving in the winning run. But then I remembered games that had to be replayed in their entirety.
So I cheated and looked it up in the rule book. The answer is that both are correct:
(a)(5) Weather, if the game is called while an inning is in progress and before it is completed, and one of the following situations prevails:
(i) The visiting team has scored one or more runs to tie the score, and the home team has not scored.
(ii) The visiting team has scored one or more runs to take the lead, and the home team has not tied the score or retaken the lead.
(b) Such games shall be known as suspended games. No game called because of a curfew, weather, or a time limit shall be a suspended game unless it has progressed far enough to have been a regulation game under the provisions of Rule 4.10 (5 innings--well, 4.5 if the home is leading).
Any regulation game called due to weather with the score tied (unless situation outlined in 4.12 (a) (5) (i) prevails) is a tie game and must be replayed in its entirety.
(d) If each team has the same number of runs when the game ends, the umpire shall declare it a "Tie Game." (e) If a game is called before it has become a regulation game, the umpire shall declare it "No Game."
So if the game is official and the visiting team has just tied or gone ahead of the game and the home team hasn't completed their half an inning, then its suspended and will be resumed later on. If the game doesn't meet the criteria for a suspended game but is tied, it is a "tie" game (the stats count) and the game must be replayed in its entirety. That's the case with the Braves-Giants game. If the game meet neither of these criteria, then it is just as if no pitches were thrown at all before the game was postponed.
Second question: Why do I consider Peter Edward Rose overrated? (By the way, he is referring to my all-time lists on my About Me page) I witnessed his demise firsthand. He signed a big, 4-year contract with the Phils in 1979 (Dec. 5, 1978 actually, for 3 point 2 mill-e-on dollars as Chico Escuela said). The Phils were just so elated to have him that they didn't have a clue were to put him with Schmidt patrolling third. They had a solid outfield with Greg "The Bull" Luzinski, Garry Maddox, and Bake Mcbride, left to right. He could no longer play second. So they stuck him at first where their weakest offensive player (relative to his position) Richie "The Hack" Hebner had played for two seasons. I was pissed because I still hated Rose and the Reds for sweeping the Phils in the playoffs two years earlier and because I loved Hebner and his unconventional, left-handed swing. Rose proved more than adequate at first and he finished second in batting average to co-MVP Keith Hernandez but the Phillies foundered finishing 4th in the East, 4 games over .500. He also developed his signature ball bounce running to the dugout after retiring the third batter of the game.
The next year Rose's average dropped but his catch in the sixth game of the World Series was unbelievable. The Phils were up three games to two against the Royals and were up 4-1 in the game at home. There was one out in the ninth and both catcher Bob Boone and Rose converged on a pop up against the screen on the first base side of home. Boone got a glove on it, but the ball popped out of his mitt, and there was Rose to grab it midair. Tug McGraw struck out the last batter and the Phillies were World Champions for the first time. It seemed like a harbinger of things to come. But it was not to be. The Phillies won the first half in the strike shortened '81 season but lost a playoff to second-half victor Montreal (their only playoff appearance). Rose still had a high average (.325) but only 33 RBI in 107 games.
The next year it all came apart for Rose, his average dropped to .271 with no power (3 HR, 54 RBI, .684 OPS). 1983 was even worse: .245 BA, 0 HR, 45 RBI, .606 OPS for a first baseman! The Phils played him 35 games in the outfield. In total he played 151 games and still the Wheeze Kid Phillies found a way to make it to the Series (he did play well in the playoffs). I saw Rose play in '82-'83 and it was pathetic. He literally could not get a ball out of the infield. The outfielders played way up--he had a total of 39 doubles for the two years combined. The rumors that Rose corked his bat may have been true because he did develop a little more pop after he left the Phils. There is no way that Rose should have been offered a job in major league baseball except that he was Rose and had records to break.
After the '83 season the Phillies, to their credit, cut him loose even though they had signed him to an extension and there was the 4000-hit milestone and all the residual affects thereof in the offing (he was at 3990). Rose signed with the Expos basically as a symbiotic relationship: he needed to break 4000 hits and they needed to make some money. He hit his 4000 hit in an Expo uniform and soon after they traded him back to the Reds. The idea was that he would finish his career ostensibly in '84 there and start his new post-player career as a manager. But Rose not only refused to retire, he inserted himself into the lineup an ungodly number of times. The amazing thing was that no one called him on it. The media loved the narcissistic bastard. The '85 and '86 Reds were pretty good clubs, but could have been better with a real first baseman. Finally, he broke the hit record, stepped down, and was just a manager. He was 45 at the time and hadn't been a major-league hitter for five years. The gambling scandal broke three years later and he was permanently suspended. Then the media turned on him for having the type-A personality that they always though was so great ("look at him run to first on a walk!" "Isn't it humorous that he is so aware of his individual stats but he really is a team player."). Now he was the man that murdered the kindly ol' Giapetto of a commissioner, A. Bart Giammati.
He should have been forced to retire after the 1982 season with 3869 hits. Instead he was allowed to hang around another four years inserting himself at will in the lineup to pad his stats. Rose was a very good player, not as good as Cobb, the man he passed on the all-time hit list, and not in the same league as Ruth, Mays, Aaron, Bonds, etc.-the upper tier of players. He has some cache because he is the only living suspended player. The truth is if there were smart journalists and sabermetricians around in his day, he would not have been able to pad out his career the way that he did.