When Bo Bichette swings, he spares no effort. His left leg kicks, his torso rotates and his hair flies. If he connects, the ball goes a long way.
With four home runs through his first 12 big-league games, Bichette has shown that his power plays at the MLB level. But what happens when he misses is also interesting for those intrigued by baseball’s unwritten rules. Consider what Bichette said Thursday after he fell to the ground with an epic swing and miss only to homer on the next pitch.
“Other teams don’t like when rookies take big swings,” he explained. “A lot of times when a rookie does that they kind of want to prove something, so I knew I might get a pitch to hit.”
Let’s take that in for a moment. Other teams don’t like it when rookies take big swings?
“I’ve heard stories of pitchers literally pegging guys because they took a mammo’ hack and missed,” said Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Randal Grichuk. “They’re still in the box and they drill them.”
“Definitely back in the day that was the case,” Grichuk continued. “There are so many unwritten rules. If there was a veteran pitcher on the mound (facing Bichette, instead of Domingo German), would he have gotten mad? The game’s changing so much, so I would hope not personally, but back in the day I could totally see that happening.”
History aside, the unwritten rules around big swings appear to be changing for the better. Grichuk might not care for bat flips, but he has no problem with big swings. Around the Blue Jays’ clubhouse, others agreed.