"The ball will find you” is a baseball adage that means there is nowhere on the field to hide a bad fielder—sooner or later, the baseball will come that player’s way. A big hitter (but poor fielder) might be placed in left field, but the ball will come to left field eventually.
“The ball will find you” was cited in 1981 as “an old saying in baseball.” Baseball executive Branch Rickey (1881-1965) was credited in 1984 for the saying. Baseball manager Buck Showalter (born 1956) liked to say that “the little white rat will find you.”
15 May 1981, The Plain Dealer (Cleveland, OH), “The Tribe’s bench shows its strength” by Dan Coughlin, pg. 1-C, col. 1:
“There is an old saying in baseball,” remarked Seghi, who has been around as long as the oldest bromide. “The ball will find you. When you have a player who isn’t quite as good as the guy he’s replacing, he may go two or three days without handling the ball in a difficult situation, but sooner or later the ball will find him.”
Google News Archive
26 May 1984, Gainesville (FL) Sun, pg. 3D, col. 3:
It’s like Branch Rickey, one of the keenest minds who ever ran a big league team, once said about the difficulties of masking defensive short comings:
“No matter where you try to hide on defense, sooner or later, the ball will find you.”
Playing the Field:
Why Defense Is the Most Fascinating Art in Major League Baseball
By Jim Kaplan
Chapel Hill, NC: Algonquin Books
“What’s the sense of having Golden Glove infielders when the guy at first is going to miss their throws? You can’t hide from the baseball; the ball will find you.”
A Player for a Moment:
Notes from Fenway Park
By John Hough
San Diego, CA:Harcourt Brace Jovanovich
Wherever you are, the ball will find you, which means that sooner or later you will be challenged. You have to be able to field your position.
Life and Time in Amateur Baseball
By Jerry Kelly
Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc.
Buck Showalter likes to say “the little white rat will find you” — meaning the ball will find your weaknesses. The game enforces its demands, always. If your shortstop’s throwing shoulder is barking, he’ll get that crucial grounder in the hole; if your third baseman has just taken a bad hop in the lip, the next one will come harder and hug the ground.
The @Pirates moved @jhay_da_man from 3rd to left mid-game. Baseball Law - the ball will find you: http://atmlb.com/1jtqNAK
7:45 PM - 18 May 2014
If you suck on defense, the ball will find you. It never fails.
7:54 PM - 16 Oct 2014
@VodkaPundit The baseball adage: if you’re a bad fielder, the ball will find you.
1:54 PM - 15 Oct 2014