[Jinx is Magic Hat's Scotch Ale]
As A.J. Burnett walked off the mound in the bottom of the fourth inning last night, John Sterling mentioned that he was carrying a no-hitter. I couldn't see the box score, and I cringed for a second, knowing that there are scores of people out there who actually think that mentioning a no-hitter or perfect game in progress "jinxes" it. Apparently Michael Kay said it on the YES broadcast as well.
Friends, we live in an age of science and reason. How, exactly, does what an announcer says into a microphone in a box 50 feet above the field impact what happens when a pitch crosses home plate? You think that's the only thing stopping a pitcher from throwing a no-no every time he takes the mound? Where do you draw the line? What if a fan in the stands mentions it? What about you at home? What if I type it? ZOMG JINX!!!1!one1!!exclamationpoint!!
No-hitters are extremely rare, there have only been 256 in the history of the MLB, or about two per year. You know what keeps them from happening? Probability. Why doesn't this apply for the cycle? There are just about as uncommon, and when a batter comes up to the plate with a 1B, 2B and a HR, you hear the announcer say "Just a triple short of the cycle" every single time and no one says a peep.
I think it's cool that the players leave the pitcher alone in the dugout. It's a great old-timey baseball tradition/superstition, and it could actually directly affect the pitcher. If a person says something odd to a pitcher that gets in his head, it might put him in the wrong frame of mind when he goes back out to the hill. I get that.
What I don't get are the morons who are going to call into the Michael Kay Show today and bitch about the fact that Kay mentioned it on the air. If John Sterling took calls during the pregame, he'd have to deal with these Druids too. Until Sterling mentioned it, I didn't know Burnett hadn't given up a hit yet. If he had never brought it up, who knows how many in the radio audience would not have realized what was taking place. It's called broadcasting. You are supposed to inform your audience of what is going on. It made the game a whole lot more interesting for the listeners.
If you are outraged that broadcasters mention no-hitters on the air, please go to Thesaurus.com and look at the antonyms for superstition: