May 5, 2011
A Partial Solution to the Ejection Epidemic
This solution probably would have worked best back in the days of Lou Piniella and Tommy Lasorda, but I'm confident it could still find use today. And, with the likes of Cowboy Joe West and Angel Hernandez wearing the blue, it may even apply to the umpires better than the players! (Rays fans would probably agree with that.)
In the October 1951 issue of Baseball Digest, we're told of an old joke about how cellmates in a prison have heard each other's funny stories so often all they have to do is yell out a number "like '33' or '89'" and everyone will bust out laughing. Because they know the anecdote by heart, you see.
Well, I guess it was funny in 1951.
Anyhow, the suggestion stems from the joke:
Vern McMillan, the new, bustling Three I League president from Terre Haute, Ind., recalled that yarn recently and explained jokingly he hoped to institute a similar program in the league to save the sensitive ears of spectators.
Brilliant. Commissioner Selig should implement it right away, if for no other reason than for us to wonder exactly what kind of names and cusses each team put on their list. I suspect they would be rather entertaining if they ever leaked out. My only question, though, is who would add the most, ahem, colorful words to the list? And, no, as a retired player, George Brett doesn't count.