MLB blasts the unwritten rules of its own sport in new ad – Washington Post

The Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig executes a bat flip after hitting a home run in September. (Jae C. Hong/Associated Press) Des Bieler Sports reporter covering national topics, as well as supporting coverage of D.C.-area teams October 3 at 2:01 AM

Before its playoffs got underway Tuesday, MLB took square aim at the infamous, unwritten rules of its own sport. In an ad featuring some of baseball’s most demonstrative young stars, MLB made it clear that it wants nothing more than to see its postseason marked by bat flips, posing at the plate and other long frowned-upon acts of celebration.

Showing the likes of the Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig, the Astros’ Carlos Correa, the Red Sox’ Mookie Betts and the Braves’ Ronald Acuna Jr., the ad has a voice-over from Ken Griffey Jr. The 48-year-old Hall of Famer quotes some of the criticisms leveled over the decades at baseball players who’ve had the temerity to express themselves in ways deemed by others as showing a lack of respect for the sport, the opponent, or both.

“They said, ‘Rules are rules,” Griffey begins, before reciting phrases such as:

    “Don’t stop and stare” “Don’t flip your bat” “Respect the jersey” “He didn’t earn that right” “Unprofessional” “Don’t celebrate, keep your head down” “Flashy” “Immature” “Showboat”

    Griffey appears at the end of the ad, wearing his hat on backward, which was something of an iconoclastic trademark of his during his heyday as “The Kid” in the 1990s. “No more talk, let the kids play,” Griffey tells the camera.

    The ad appears to reflect an understanding by MLB officials that some, if not most, of their most prominent young players are chafing under an informal

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