Million Dollar Question – What Would The Reaction To Some Of Baseball’s Greatest Home Runs be Like Today??

Million Dollar Question – What Would The Reaction To Some Of Baseball’s Greatest Home Runs be Like Today??

With all of the drama surrounding Carlos Gomez and the brawl that ensued after his near-home run against the Pirates a week ago, it made me wonder how some of the greatest home runs in baseball history, and the celebration that followed them, would be tolerated in today’s more sensitive baseball climate.

Taking out the walk-off, game-winning home run that brings a complete team to home plate to celebrate at the conclusion of a game, there are a ton of players from the past and present that celebrate the 2-run home run in the third inning of a ballgame with nothing on the line.

And I sit here and wonder how the baseball climate would react to former home run hitters if they played today – during a time in which pitchers take things more personal and coaches scream at their foes from the opposing dugout.

How would the opponent react If Matt Kemp pumped his arms like Kirk Gibson?

How would the opponent react if Coco Crisp popped his jersey and skipped a few steps out of the batter’s box a la Rickey Henderson?

How would the opponent react if Carlos Beltran stood at home plate and watched his home run sail over the outfield wall like Reggie Jackson?

For me, I think a lot of it has to do with the player and not really the moment.  If a player is hurting the team he is facing, that is when things get testy.  If he has hurt the team in the past or if there is bad blood from prior incidents, the first unnecessary action could be the thing that takes things to the next level.

Where do you stand on this?  Would the heroes of yesterday be treated differently today or would they to be on the opposite end of a brawl for their actions?

I’m interested to get your take on this one.  Let’s Go!!

Brewers Braves Baseball

3 responses to “Million Dollar Question – What Would The Reaction To Some Of Baseball’s Greatest Home Runs be Like Today??

  1. Interesting points

  2. You already know this, but during Andre’s 1987 MVP season, he got plunked in the face by a pitch from Padre’s Eric Show. Hawk was beating up Padre pitching over the course of the season to that point; I think he had six home runs and at least one off of Show.

    I think we have to remember that athletes, regardless of the times, have always had fragile egos and pride. If a player has been locked in and ripping it, that pitcher doesn’t want to become a statistic.

    You know Andre, he never took a home run for granted, he didn’t hop around or show up the pitcher in anyway. I think players’ like Gomez, actions perpetuate it, but no matter the era, instances like this happen. Probably the difference is in Ruth’s or Mantle’s day, the media didn’t care so much if a beaning or brawl happened, that was secondary to who won the game.

    I think some of it has to do with post-PED era too. The game is leaning more towards pitching now, so they have more sense of control on the outcome. When Bonds, Sosa and McGwire were launching jacks on everyone, I don’t remember a whole lot of fight from the pitchers; I think pitchers just gave up.

    • Charley- As always, excellent commentary.

      I also think money has something to do with this. Pitchers, while trying to win for the team, are very locked into their own numbers – from ERA to WHIP to runs allowed, etc. This certainly can cause tempers to rise when it is not ‘your day’…

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