Not Flipping Out Over Bat Flipping

Full disclosure, I’m a lifelong baseball fan. I love everything about the game—the history, the athleticism and the strategy the game requires, the dynamics of team play. Even the quirks add to my enjoyment, and yes, there are a lot of quirks. For example, most (but not all) players avoid stepping on the foul lines, and no one mentions a no-hitter if one’s in progress. Which in 2019 leads to bat flipping.

This season, bat flipping has been a prime topic for discussion, with Chicago White Sox player Tim Henderson’s energetic bat flip on April 26 one the hottest moments. Old school mentality says it’s going too far. Modern day sensibilities say bring it on. What gives? In an era of spirited end zone dances in the NFL and thunderous dunks in the NBA, is bat flipping a major deal in the major leagues?

My view is, as long as you’re not trying to make another person feel bad, go for it. Let’s see some emotion. If you just sent a ball to the upper deck or brought home a runner on a sacrifice fly, send the joy too. And if baseball is a metaphor for many other life pursuits (and I believe it is), it’s fine by me to celebrate in-game success. I would welcome seeing a regional sales team celebrating in a conference room or a route driver returning to the cheers of coworkers. Exuberance is contagious.

In the spirit of fun and enthusiasm for being enthusiastic about baseball, here are a few of my favorite bat flips.

Odubel Herrera, 2016

Jose Batista, 2015

David Ortiz, 2014