Of all the plays in a Major League Baseball game, one of the most second-guessed is whether or not a player should have tried to take that extra base or not.  Close plays, especially at home plate are as thrilling as it gets.  Though what about those times when the runner is “out by a mile”?

Should the manager risk it and attempt to send the runner or play it conservative and sit tight?

Lou Brock

In Baseball Classics baseball game Intermediate play level you can make those base running decisions managing from the top step of the dugout.  Each player card has a Steal rating and a Run rating.  All ratings are based on their actual MLB season performance.

Keeping with the consistent easy to play full color theme, the ratings are color-coded symbols.  There are four rating levels as follows:

 Excellent rating      Very good rating      Fair rating      Poor rating

Each batter’s steal and base running rating are on the upper left hand side located just below the name of the player and team.

Baseball Classics Baseball Game Play Chart

The Baseball Classics Baseball Game Play Chart has the same look and feel format of our colorful next generation player cards and uses the same lookup when looking up the results of your play actions.  There are 5 columns including the Roll and one for each red, yellow, blue, and red symbol rating.

Baseball Classics Baseball Game Play Chart

To the right of the Bunting, Base Stealing, and Base Running charts there is a Legend for each.  Note the colors and symbols used to indicate whether a bunt, steal attempt, or advancing the base runner has been successful or not.

Base Stealing

The Base Stealing chart in the Baseball Classics Baseball Game Play Chart is your reference point whenever the team at bat attempts to steal 2nd, 3rd, or Home. However runners with a Steal rating of red () are not allowed to attempt to steal any base because they had 0 successful stolen bases that season which is why that column is blank in the table.

When the team on offense elects to attempt to steal a base, they roll all 3 six-sided dice anytime within the inning before or after an at bat and lookup the result in the Base Stealing chart by looking under the Roll column and looking across to the player Steal rating.

There are many strategies to consider whether to attempt to steal a base.  The following play examples will demonstrate how to attempt base stealing in several game situations.

Lou BrockLet’s use one of the All-Time Greats player cards for these examples; St. Louis Cardinals Lou Brock.  As one of the most feared and greatest base stealers in the history of Major League Baseball, it’s not surprise he has a green Steal rating.

Play Example 1 – Attempted steal of 2nd Base is successful

1 out, Lou Brock on 1st Base, a steal attempt is called by the team at bat.

With a roll of all 3 six-sided dice, we have the following:

Standard six-sided dice total 14 (6, 6, 2)

Looking under the Roll column to 14 then looking under the Green rating column, a roll of 14 is a green filled square.  The Legend indicates “Steals 2nd base, otherwise thrown out”.  So a close call, though Lou Brock is safe stealing 2nd base.

 

Play Example 2 – Attempted steal of 3rd Base is successful

1 out, Lou Brock on 2nd Base, a steal attempt is called by the team at bat.

With a roll of all 3 six-sided dice, we have the following:

Standard six-sided dice total 8 (1, 5, 2)

Looking under the Roll column to 8 then looking under the Green rating column, a roll of 8 is a green filled square with a check mark.  The Legend indicates “Steals any base”.  This time Lou Brock makes it rather easily, this is safe stealing 2nd base.

 

Play Example 3 – Attempted double steal of 2nd Base and Home is not successful

1 out and a walk to the next batter runners are on 1st and 3rd Base.  The runner on 1st Base has a Steal rating of Blue, Lou Brock is on 3rd Base with his Green steal rating.  A double-steal attempt is called by the team at bat.

When a double-steal is called, the team in the field determines which of the base runners they want to attempt to throw out.  In this example the team in the field elects to throw out Lou Brock attempting to steal Home.

With a roll of all 3 six-sided dice, we have the following:

Standard six-sided dice total 10 (4, 3, 3)

Looking under the Roll column to 10 then looking under the Green rating column, a roll of 10 is a green filled square with a black dot.  The Legend indicates “Steals 2nd or 3rd base, otherwise thrown out”.  This time Lou Brock is out attempting to steal Home for the second out of the inning and the base runner on 1st steals 2nd Base without a play on him.

 

When it comes to attempting stealing a base in Baseball Classics, we discussed the Steal rating and how to reference it using the Baseball Classics Baseball Game Play Chart.  We reviewed several base stealing play examples including where not only the team on offense is involved in the strategy, but the team on defense too when a double-steal is called.  Who are some of your favorite base stealers in baseball history and would you rather have a team built on speed for base stealing or on power to manage?

In the next article of this series regarding How To Play Baseball Classics baseball game, I we will explore the exciting element of base running in Baseball Classics Baseball Game.