Graig Nettles on ‘The Baseball Bunch’


WHY ISN’T
THE CHICKEN’S BEAK
12 INCHES LONG? IT WOULD BE A FOOT. MAN, JOHN,
THAT JOKE’S ANCIENT. ANCIENT, HUH? WATCH MY BUNCH.
MAYBE YOU’LL FEEL YOUNG AGAIN. AROUND THE HORN! WHAT’S WRONG,
CHICKEN? BASEBALL BUNCH UNITY
IS DISSOLVING A LITTLE. WE BETTER
GIVE THEM HELP. COME ON, CHICKEN. HERE. CHICKEN,
WHAT’S GOING ON HERE? YEAH, YOU’RE PITCHING. HITS A GROUND BALL… THIRD BASEMAN… THROWS TO FIRST.
HE’S OUT. [HONK HONK] THEY THROW IT
AROUND THE HORN. OK.
ALL RIGHT. OH, I GET IT NOW. WE WERE THROWING THE BALL
BACK TO CHICKEN SO WE COULD KEEP PLAYING. MY FRIEND
GRAIG NETTLES SAYS… GIVE ME THAT BALL. ANDY, GIVE IT TO HIM. AN OLD BASEBALL
TRADITION. WHEN THE BALL
ROUNDS THE HORN, THE PITCHER ONLY ACCEPTS IT
FROM THE THIRD BASEMAN. YOU MUST BE
A THIRD BASEMAN. ONE OF THE BEST. FROM THE NEW YORK YANKEES,
GRAIG NETTLES. YANKEE CAPTAIN GRAIG NETTLES
HAS A BAT LOADED WITH HOME RUNS. IN 1976,
HE LED THE AMERICAN LEAGUE. IN 15 SEASONS, HE’S DISPLAYED HIS TROT
MORE OFTEN THAN ANY THIRD BASEMAN
IN LEAGUE HISTORY. NOW IN HIS 10th SEASON
AS A YANKEE DOODLE DANDY, GRAIG IS THE MAN
WITH THE GOLDEN GLOVE, A MAN WITH THE CORNER
ON THE HOT-CORNER MARKET. GRAIG IS A GUY
WHO’LL DO WHATEVER IT TAKES TO WIN A BALL GAME. A FIVE-TIME ALL-STAR, GRAIG LED THE YANKEES
TO FIVE DIVISION TITLES, FOUR AMERICAN LEAGUE PENNANTS,
AND TWO WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS. NETTLES SWINGS.
THERE IT GOES! BABY, SEE YOU LATER! THE GAME IS OVER. HOME RUN! THE YANKEES WIN IT 2-0. IN THE GREATEST
PINSTRIPE TRADITION, LIKE RUTH, GEHRIG,i MAGGIO,
AND MANTLE BEFORE HIM, GRAIG NETTLES IS A WINNER. YOU’RE
A BALL-PLAYING
BIRD? TAUGHT HIM
EVERYTHING HE KNOWS. HE’S A GOOD
CATCHER? I’M TEACHING HIM
THIRD BASE. SHOW ME
WHAT YOU’VE LEARNED. QUICK ON HIS FEET. REAL FUNNY.
THE HOT CORNER. IT’S THE HOT CORNER BECAUSE YOU’RE SO CLOSE
TO THE HITTER. LINE DRIVES
WHIZ PAST YOUR HEAD. SOMETIMES I GET SCARED
OF THOSE LINE DRIVES. ■■ THE TRICK
IS CONCENTRATION. EXPECT EVERY BALL
TO BE HIT AT YOU. AS A CATCHER,
I PREPARED FOR EVERY PITCH. I MADE THE CALL,
THEN SET MYSELF UP. FIRST AND THIRD
ARE ALMOST IDENTICAL. I’M SURE
GRAIG HAS SOMETHING
TO PREPARE HIMSELF. I DO HAVE A RITUAL
I GO THROUGH. I’LL SHOW YOU
WHAT I MEAN. I’LL PLACE MYSELF
AWAY FROM THE LINE. I DON’T PLAY TOO CLOSE
TO THE LINE. BETWEEN THE PITCHES,
I’LL GET UP HERE. I’LL CLEAR ROCKS,
FILL IN HOLES, THEN GET BACK
TO MY POSITION. AS THE PITCHER RELEASES, I’LL GET ON THE BALLS
OF MY FEET, WITH MY REAR END
AND GLOVE LOW. GRAIG NETTLES SAYS
THERE ARE NO SECRETS TO FIELDING GROUND BALLS, BUT THERE ARE SOME FUNDAMENTALS
THAT HE STRESSES. THE FIRST IS CONCENTRATION. LOOK THE BALL ALL THE WAY
INTO THE GLOVE BEFORE YOU THROW IT. BASEBALLS CAN BOUNCE
A LOT OF UNEXPECTED WAYS. WHENEVER POSSIBLE, CENTER
YOUR BODY IN FRONT OF THE BALL. BE READY TO MOVE
IN EVERY DIRECTION. CATCH THE BALL
WITH A RELAXED GLOVE HAND. ABOVE ALL, PRACTICE. THERE’S NO SUBSTITUTE
FOR HARD WORK WHEN IT COMES
TO IMPROVING YOUR GAME. CAN I SEE YOUR GLOVE? IT MUST HAVE
MAGICAL POWERS. NO. IT’S THE SAME
AS YOURS. WHAT DOES THE E-5 MEAN? THAT’S SCORECARD LINGO
FOR ERROR ON THIRD BASE. WHEN I SEE THAT, I CONCENTRATE HARDER
IN THE FIELD. CONCENTRATION STARTS
DURING INFIELD PRACTICE. I HATE SEEING
SOMEBODY GOOF AROUND. WE HAVE
SOMEBODY LIKE THAT.
RIGHT, CHICKEN? WE CAN TEACH YOU. FIRST YOU HAVE TO
ADDRESS THE FIELD. I KNOW WHAT YOU MEAN. HELLO, FIELD.
MY NAME’S JOHNNY BENCH. THAT’S NOT WHAT I MEAN.
GET SERIOUS. WE’LL HIT SOME
GROUND BALLS. CHICK,
YOU GO WITH ME. JOHN WILL FIND OUT
PRETTY SOON NOT TO TAKE
THIS HOT CORNER
TOO LIGHTLY. JOHN WILL HIT YOU
SOME BALLS. HERE WE GO. MAKE A GOOD THROW. THAT’S IT. GOOD! ALL RIGHT. ORDINARILY, YOU GO THIRD,
SHORT, SECOND, FIRST, BUT JOHNNY IS JUST
WORKING WITH YOU TODAY. LET’S TURN THEM OVER. DOUBLE PLAY.
HERE WE GO. THAT’S IT. THAT THROW WAS
A LITTLE HIGH. GET DOWN BETWEEN
THE WAIST AND THE LETTERS. TRY IT AGAIN. GIVE HIM A GOOD THROW. THERE.
THAT’S PERFECT. QUICK LEARNER! HE’LL HIT
SOME TOUGH ONES NOW. I THINK HE’S GOT IT. THAT’S THE WAY.
OH, YEAH! REAL TRICKY THERE. GOT TO GET
THE DOUBLE PLAY. THERE YOU GO. YOU LET IT
GET THROUGH YOU. TRY TO BLOCK IT
WITH YOUR CHEST. KEEP IT IN FRONT OF YOU. KNOCK IT DOWN
TO KEEP THAT GUY ON FIRST BASE. IF IT GETS BY YOU,
HE’LL HAVE A DOUBLE. ALWAYS TRY TO GET
IN FRONT OF THE BALL. THIS TIME
WE’RE COMING HOME. BE READY TO COVER
AFTERWARD. THROW IT HOME. GOOD PLAY! THAT WAS GOOD. NOW A LITTLE BUNT. MAKE THAT
SACRIFICE PLAY. THROW HOME.
PERFECT! GOOD THROW!
GOOD THROW. AFTER YOU THROW IT,
GET BACK TO THE BAG. CHICKEN WILL
THROW IT DOWN HERE. GOOD THROW.
NOW BACK TO THE BAG. GOOD. BAD ROW
BUT A GOOD PLAY. NOW WE’RE COMING HOME.
YOU FOLLOW IT. FOLLOW IT IN NOW. KEEP GOING. HE’S OUT! THEY CALL THAT
AN UNASSISTED PUTOUT. HEY, WHAT IS THIS?
LOOK AT YOU. YOU LOOK LIKE
A BIG-LEAGUE
THIRD BASEMAN. TAKE THE HOT CORNER. YOU IN THE PINSTRIPE
FEATHERS, YOU READY
TO GET ONE? ALL RIGHT.
FIRE IT DOWN THERE,
ANDY. HE’S OUT.
NICE PLAY. VERY GOOD! READY?
HERE’S SHORT! ALL RIGHT.
SECOND BASE. I UNDERSTAND
THE PROBLEM. THERE’S
A BASEBALL EXPRESSION– THE THIRD BASEMAN’S
SUPPOSED TO TAKE EVERYTHING. I’LL SHOW YOU
WHAT HE MEANS. JOHN, HIT US
A BALL IN THE HOLE. WE BOTH COULD
GET THE BALL. WHO’S GOT
THE EASIER PLAY? YOU DO. YORE
A MAJOR LEAGUER. NO. I’M MOVING■
WARD FIRST BASE, SO IT’S
AN EASIER THROW, BUT YOU CAN’T
TAKE IT ALL. THOUGH HE SAYS
YOU CAN GET EVERYTHING, THERE’S LIMITS. YOU JUST CAN’T
RUN A “FOWL”. ■■■■■ I MIGHT FIT IN
WITH THIRD BASEMEN. THE THIRD BASEMAN
HAS MANY PLAYS. WHERE DO YOU PLAY? A LOT DEPENDS ON
THE SITUATION IN THE GAME. WHAT IF
WE HAVE A ONE-RUN LEAD IN THE NINTH
WITH NOBODY OUT? WE GOT THREE OUTS. NORMALLY,
I’D BE OVER THERE, BUT LATE IN THE GAME, WITH A ONE-RUN LEAD
OR TIE GAME, YOU’D PLAY
BACK HERE. IF THE TYING RUN
GETS ON, YOU’D EXPECT A BUNT. IF A LEFTHANDED
PULL HITTER IS UP, YOU PLAY
TOWARD SHORTSTOP. DEPENDING ON THE SITUATION,
I VARY MY POSITION. MY NORMAL POSITION
BE WOULD BEHIND THE BAG AND OFF THE LINE. YOURS COULD BE
SOMEWHERE ELSE. WHEREVER YOU ARE,
BE READY TO MOVE.■ MY MAIN BIRD
GOT CARRIED AWAY. LET HIM
REDEEM HIMSELF. YOU THINK
HE DESERVES IT? SURE. SUPER CHICKEN,
SHOW US YOUR STUFF. GIVE HIM SOME ROOM. FASTER THAN
A SPEEDING BULLET, MORE POWERFUL
THAN A CHAIN-LINK FENCE, ABLE TO LEAP FOR TALL BASEBALLS
IN A SINGLE BOUND. LOOK, UP IN THE SKY!
IS IT A BIRD? YES!
IT’S SUPER CHICKEN! EVEN A SUPER CHICKEN
HAS PROBLEMS. SOMETIMES
IT’S JUST NOT HIS DAY. AND THEN THERE’S
THOSE ALL BAD HOPS AND TOUGH PLAYS. NOBODY’S PERFECT. AFTER ALL,
HE’S ONLY HUMAN. IT’S NOT CALLED
THE HOT CORNER FOR NOTHING. YOU KNOW,
IT’S HARD TO PLAY THERE. BELIEVE ME.
I KNOW. THERE’S A LOT OF GROUND
TO COVER AND DIFFERENT PLAYS
TO MAKE. IT TAKES A TOUGH BIRD
TO MAN THIRD BASE. IT TAKES A SUPER CHICK! SUPER CHICKEN! HE WASN’T SO SUPER. A LOT OF BALLS
GOT BY HIM. NOBODY STOPS
EVERY BALL,

12 thoughts on “Graig Nettles on ‘The Baseball Bunch’

  1. Used to watch this growing up. That's why I was surprised to see that Johnny Bench is actually a bit of a prick. He didn't show it in this series.

  2. I wonder how many women that he do? I can't help wonder if he influenced the gene pool of the Major Leagues today? I mean they don't exactly resemble Brooks Robinson or Mike Schmidt.

  3. the best play at 3rd base in a world series ever that I can remember during my lifetime I'm 51 now I know Brooks Robinson stole the 70 world series from the reds I don't recall it but 77-78 I was 11-12 and Greg nettles had a world series I will never forget.

  4. One of the most underrated player ever. Even though his average wasn't good, he made up for it in many other ways.

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