I didn't want them to sign Franco either. (Though for $800k, it doesn't much matter who they chose to play 3B.)
But that play was not at all his fault. He did exactly what he is trained to do in that situation. So if this thread is really about the bunt, it's not the place to thrash Franco.
The Orioles want exciting players, too -- so long as they're cheap and aren't among the Saviors of the Franchise being held back so that team control of them will fall within some imagined flood of talent that's on its way some day.
If they can't have all those things, the Orioles will opt for cheap.
I'll try to explain in a future post why I think the Orioles may be underestimating the damage they're doing to themselves, but here's the gist of it. By not trying, year after year, to put young, entertaining talent on the field, the Orioles are having their fan base, and attendance, eaten away. That's a manageable problem if you're operating in Houston or Chicago, or in a pre-Nats Baltimore with a stadium that itself is a fan attraction. In Baltimore, in 2017-22, the loss of fans is much more likely to have significant, long-lasting effects.
I don’t care about inning so much as pitch count. The manager knows a pitchers maximum number of effective pitches, and that number is higher or lower based on effectiveness during that game. We don’t know that number, but Hyde does. When he starts the inning where that effective limit is nigh, get a guy up, because even if the pitcher ends the inning clean he will have reached his maximum, and the new guy will start the next inning anyway.
there are always surprises of course but by definition they are unexpected, and shouldn’t drastically alter the basic plan. If the Pitcher has a good five pitch inning, no reason not to let him start the next inning with the same parameters, if he has a 5 pitch inning with three very loud outs, he’s done and the new guy takes the next inning, and so on.
so yes, I would have had a guy up in the 5th