New York Yankees: Did Gleyber Torres break baseball’s ‘unwritten rules’ with his steal?

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

The New York Yankees came to the plate to the ninth inning of last night’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays, the first of the American League Division Series, up 4-3 and looking for some insurance runs.

They got one when Aaron Hicks drove Kyle Higashioka in with a single. With the game 5-3 and the bases loaded, Giancarlo Stanton caught a hanging slider thrown by John Curtiss and sent it to dead center for a grand slam. The New York Yankees were now up 9-3.

Curtiss proceeded to throw up and in pitches to both Gio Urshela and Gleyber Torres, the former immediately after the grand slam. Torres got on base and subsequently stole second base in a move that many people, including former pitcher and Yankees’ rival Pedro Martinez (working as an analyst), criticized. He though Gleyber was being disrespectful by stealing a base in a six-run game.

But is it really a disrespectful attitude from Torres? Martinez said that Torres violated some of the so-called baseball’s “unwritten rules” by taking a base in such a lopsided game. But what if the Rays mounted a rally in the bottom of the ninth? What if the Yankees later rejected not taking the base and trying to score more runs and Tampa won it? Would they have to apologize?

The Yankees were trying to increase their winning chances

Torres’ attitude after nearly getting plunked in the head should be the one to take: not charge the pitcher and risk an ejection or, even worse, a suspension, but instead, playing all-out baseball and trying to make sure his team, the Yankees, scores the most possible runs.

After all, there is no greater act of respect than playing to the top of your abilities, knowing that your rival is good enough to try (and succeed) to make a comeback.

Baseball’s unwritten rules, which were so respected for years, are beginning to look outdated, or maybe they shouldn’t have been there in the first place.

The Yankees, especially against the Rays and even moreso after the attitude shown by Curtis by pitching near the head not once, but twice, will feel the need to score more runs and trying to increase the odds of a victory. It’s the playoffs! They need to!