Yasiel Puig recently made headlines by declaring he would be ceasing his trademark bat flips much to the dismay of many Dodgers fans. Puig’s bat flips have been the focal point of many discussions about the sanctity of the game and emotional outbursts on the field. Some people believe that they disrespect the game and that Puig should be “playing the game the right way”.
Despite what boring people and Cardinals fans think, bat flipping is fun. It doesn’t ruin the history of the game or whatever they’ve been claiming. It’s not just Puig that bat flips other players from other clubs have been bat flipping for years. Jose Bautista performed a huge bat flip last season for the Blue Jays after he hit a home run that almost caused a lot of the anti-bat flip purists’ heads to explode.
If you don’t like bat flips then you probably don’t like fun and are dead inside. I think bat flips can be a work of art. People don’t understand that they are not easy to do. It takes practice to flip a bat well enough for the video to go viral. First you have to hit a home run or at least get an extra base hit. You can’t just flip a bat on a routine grounder. Imagine how sill that would look? Then you have to be able to get enough height on the flip itself to constitute a proper bat flip.
The wrist twist, the arc, the hang time all determine a good bat flip. I love watching a good bat flip because it’s fun and you guys know this site is all about having fun. So in honor of these incredible displays of bat masonry, I think we should look at the top 5 Dodger bat flips of all time.
Of course bat flipping has been around since the beginning of time in baseball. Many players bat flipped in years past but nobody said much about it because it was before twitter had been invented. Let’s take a look at a few of the best non-Dodger bat flips first.
Bat flip compilation
Here’s a cool compilation of bat flips past and present from around MLB. Puig didn’t invent the art, he just perfected it.
Jose Bautista- Toronto- Game 5 2015 ALDS vs. Rangers
This bat flip caused all kinds of madness. Can you imagine the energy at Rogers Center that evening? The Blue Jays being in the postseason for the first time in 22 years, and Bautista smashing a massive three-run homer to put the Blue Jays ahead and helping to send them to play for the American League pennant. It also pissed off the Rangers something awful. A brawl ensued and well a whole lot of bedlam. Watch and marvel.
Reggie Jackson – game 6 1978 World Series @ Dodgers
This one sucked because it came against the Dodgers but you can’t deny that it was a pretty good bat flip. Mr. October also known as Reggie Jackson crushes a home run off of Bob Welch that pretty much sealed the championship for the Yankees. A classic bat flip indeed.
Now let’s get to the top 5 Dodger bat flips of all time.
- Hyun-jin Ryu 6-6-14 @ Colorado
Ryu didn’t hit a home run, he merely doubled. However his bat flip was pretty impressive for someone who’s probably never bat flipped before. Ryu is relatively new to the art of bat flipping and we can tell that spending time watching Puig really paid off. Great job Ryu!
- Tie Yasiel Puig 5-9-14 vs. Giants and Puig 10-14-13 Game 3 NLCS vs. Cardinals
This was a monster bat flip that came on a triple against Wainwright and the Cardinals in the NLCS
This one was great because it ticked off Madison Bumgarner and the Giants. You probably remember this one right? Puig hits a home run to dead center field and then bat flips like normal. Bumgarner takes offense to this and starts hollering at him while he’s rounding the bases. Puig shrugs his shoulders at Bumgarner basically saying “what!?” For Puig bat flipping is just an everyday part of his game so the idea of somebody getting upset with him about it didn’t compute. The two men almost came to blows. The Dodgers lost this game, but at least Bumgarner was annoyed.
- Zack Greinke 8-6-15 @ Philadelphia
Greinke can bat flip with the best of them. This one came off of David Buchanan in enemy territory at Citizen’s Bank Park. Greinke actually gave up six runs in that game, but totally nailed the bat flip.
- Yasiel Puig 6-14-14 vs. Arizona
This is one of the greatest bat flips of Puig’s bat flipping career. Hilariously it came on a ball four. Puig flips his bat so high in the air that it almost hits the home plate umpire.
- Hong-Chih Kuo 6-12-07 Vs. Mets
Perhaps the greatest bat flip of all time came from the most unlikely player. It was June 12, 2007 and the Dodgers were at home playing the Mets. Starting pitcher Hong-Chih Kuo hits his first (1:49) and only career MLB home run. Oddly this was the third homer of three consecutive home runs (Wilson Betemit, Matt Kemp) from the Dodgers. His monstrous bat flip was the stuff of legends. Watch and be amazed.
Keep on bat flipping everyone!