ask, baseball, bolt, Darren, draft, Ford, Francisco, freelance, get, giants, home, jackie, karthikm.t., Mays, mlb, mtk, pinch, play, robinson, rookie, runner, San, series, speed, squeeze, steal, usain, Willie, world
After listening to fans of Usain Bolt talk during the Olympics about using him as a wide receiver or kickoff returner in American Football, it suddenly struck me there may be a better fit for his crossover to commercial US sports:
The San Francisco Giants should hire Usain Bolt to pinch run.
He would never bat, never face a pitch. Why not teach the Jamaican how to position himself, when to run, how to turn the corner and how to slide?
He’d be used in the exact way Bochy used Darren Ford in ’10 and ’11: to manufacture runs in key innings, in late innings and extra-inning games on the road, for our generally run-depleted squad.
Darren Ford’s exploits, which gained him the nickname The Bullet, are well remembered by fans of the current two-time World Series Champion SF Giants.
Most famous was his game-winning run in the 2-1 victory over the Colorado Rockies in September during our run to the division lead in 2010.
“With the game tied 1-1 in the eighth, Mike Fontenot drew a walk. Fontenot runs fine. Ford, however, might be one of the fastest guys on any big league roster. Ford ran for Fontenot and broke for second, and was standing on the bag, when Colorado‘s Ubaldo Jimenez fielded Tim Lincecum‘s quite average sacrifice bunt.” reads this b/r piece on the play.
Usain Bolt might be a very effective pinch runner if he can be taught the mechanics of base-running. Willie Mays stole home 5 times, Jackie Robinson 9 times … how many do you think Bolt could take if he could be put in position? Think squeeze play.
Bay Area Sports Guy hosted a piece on how important base-running is to the SF Giants just before this season started, but anybody who understands baseball and what just happened with the Giants versus the Tigers will get it, so please comment and spread the discourse.
Here’s the man, doin it:
Usain Bolt as solely a pinch runner – a specialist position. Inexpensive, but possibly very effective in tight games, when you have great pitching and defense. Discuss amongst yourselves.
3, AT&T, away, baseball, california, championship, detroit, Francisco, game, giants, knbr, Lurie, Marty, Mays, park, Plaza, radio, ring, Romo, San, San Francisco Giants, series, shutout, tigers, vogelsong, Willie, world
ALL YEAR LONG I HAVE HUGE … OK NOT HUGE, BUT ALL KINDS OF LITTLE DIFFERENCES WITH THIS GUY AND YOU KNOW WHAT HE DOES?
He invites me on the radio to talk about it.
and last Saturday he let me wear the Championship Ring from 2010. wow.
Marty Lurie, radio host who joined KNBR after working to cover the A’s, was immediately a lucky element for the Giants.
He and I stood exactly where we are in this photo two years before, and bore witness during the run that finally made the Giants World Series Champs in San Francisco. Marty walked in and we won.
For decades a criminal defense attorney, and at that a New Yorker, Mr. Lurie became a historian of the game of baseball independent of what he does now for KNBR. If anyone must, Marty Lurie must be associated with the cross-country relationship the Giants have that reaches back to the Polo Grounds in New York City.
But yes, by providence and timing, Marty has grown into a unique role and is now an important member of the San Francisco Giants team.
Mr. Lurie’s an excellent radio interviewer whose competence is a direct result of his research. I loved watching him at the Public House in Game 5 against the Braves back in 2010. He sat down to score the game and pulled out a yellow legal pad to do it. He’s a baseball nerd trained as a lawyer!
Mr. Lurie’s interviews of baseball players and managers, which he’s been conducting season-long for three years now, are a growing chronicle of the game.
Lurie brought a whole lot of AL contacts over to KNBR the first year and was eager to share with us NLers the value of certain stories. But slowly over the past three years, he has joined the stewards of the Giants Championships of 2010 and 2012 who collectively are arbiters of our first time championship memories.
So Mr. Lurie is an attorney who can discuss both leagues’ histories very effectively.
Marty, I’m saying it here for the first time: You’re the only lawyer I really like.
Thanks for letting me wear the Championship Ring and for doing such a bang-up job behind the mic.
“M.T.” and, in 2010, “Carter from Oakland”
(just pissed off a whole lot of lawyers I know who think me and them’re “real close”).