(above : world-class head; knee-hunter Josh Beckett in spring training action) “You can’t bunt when you’re up or down so many runs. You can’t bunt when it’s a no-hitter. There’s certain unwritten rules of the game that just don’t make any sense to me.” So stated Tigers OF Curtis Ganderson after his club’s 10-5 loss to Boston Wednesday night, a contest highlighted by Josh Beckett taking a no hitter into the 7th inning and Detroit’s Gerald Laird being drilled for attempting to break up said no-no with a 6th inning bunt. The score was 4-0 at the time, or as Laird put it to MLB.com’s Ian Browne and Jason Beck, “You’ve got to (try to) win that game…when you’re only down four runs in the sixth inning, what does he want us to do? You do whatever you can to get on.”

Never shy about expressing his opinion, Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley, who was serving as a color commentator on NESN for Wednesday’s game, wasn’t a big fan of Laird’s attempted bunt. “I didn’t like it. But I’m a pitcher,” said Eckersley, who threw a no-hitter in 1977 for the Indians. “I wouldn’t like it; I don’t think Nolan Ryan would have liked it.”

However, Red Sox manager Terry Francona had no issue with Laird’s attempt Wednesday in what would end up a 10-5 win for Boston. “You know what, I’m not big on unwritten rules anyway,” Francona said. “I think their job is to try to beat us and our job is to try to beat them. I think that somewhere along the way, the book and the unwritten rule has gotten rewritten by people that don’t know how to write. What was the score, 4-0? They’re trying to win. I just think — just play the game.”

Tito’s measured response was in stark contrast to the reaction of then-Snakes skipper Bob Brenly, who famously described Padres catcher Ben Davis as “young and having a lot to learn,” for having the temerity to try and end a Curt Schilling perfect game with a bunt. Noting the score of said May, 200 contest was 2-0 at the time, Baseball Prospectus’ Dan Pease wrote,

Unfortunately for Brenly and Schilling, “get the opposing pitcher the perfect game” isn’t the end goal of major-league baseball teams. By upsetting Schilling’s routine, Davis gave the Padres a better chance to win an important game against a divisional rival. If Brenly has a problem with that, he’s the one with something to learn.

The Red Sox currently lead the Tigers, 6-3, in the fifth inning at Comerica Park. Let the record show that Granderson broke up Tim Wakefield’s no-hit bid the right way with a second inning single.