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Sixth Inning Snapshot: Did Brian Dozier Do the Right Thing By Trying To Score?

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Dozier was safe on this slide, but at another point in the game his decision to run may have been a bit more controversial.
Dozier was safe on this slide, but at another point in the game his decision to run may have been a bit more controversial.

This was mentioned briefly in today's game recap, but it's a moment I find intriguing. In the sixth inning of today's game, with the Twins leading 3-2, there was one out with runners on the corners when Alexi Casilla hit a hard grounder to first base. Brian Dozier tried to score from third.

Here's the video.

Dozier didn't have to try to score. With second base empty, base running 101 probably says: stay put. It's a hard grounder right to the first baseman, who has a clear view of what Dozier is doing and would have plenty of time to make a good throw home. Brian would be dead in the water.

But you could argue that Dozier forcing the issue at the plate was actually the best thing he could have done. By staying on third, as the book would recommend, the Indians probably could have turned an easy 3-6-3 double play to end the inning.

Instead, by advancing on home plate and drawing the attention of Matt LaPorta, Dozier was out at home but kept his team at the plate. Ultimately the Twins didn't score in the sixth, but runners on first and second with two out is certainly preferable to ending the inning.

It's certainly more than feasible that the Twins, that Dozier, that Steve Liddle, knew what was happening here. Maybe I'm behind the curve. But it was definitely a moment goes against traditional baseball teaching, and I certainly think that in this case Dozier did make the right choice. Whether it was intentional or not.