Saturday, June 23, 2007
(posted by OMDQ)
For the most part, my highly subjective Mikulik-Wellman Scale (still in beta) is intended to measure the amazingness of managerial ejections, simply because they are usually the ones that run the best chance of elevating to classic status in a matter of moments.
There are times, however, when a player goes off so impressively that it just can't be ignored. Saturday evening, Mets-A's, Paul Lo Duca - definitely one of those times.
During his sixth inning at-bat against Oakland ace Joe Blanton, Lo Duca took exception to a strike call by home plate umpire Marvin Hudson that ran the count to 0-2. Words were exchanged, gestures ("vehement" ones) were made, and the Mets catcher was eventually invited to leave the game a few innings early.
He didn't take it well.
After Lo Duca was tossed and continued to argue, Willie Randolph arrived on the scene to get his player the hell out of there before he did anything to get himself into bigger trouble. But Paul Lo Duca was full of rage and unhappiness on this particular day, and nothing would prevent him from saying his piece. He fought off Randolph and once again confronted Hudson, with cameras capturing an angry face that can't be fully described with the written word. Fortunately, we have this picture:
It's imperfect (if only his hand wasn't in the way) but I think you get the idea. Bulging eyes, eyebrows in a perfect "V", teeth bared - a perfect storm of rage.
Also pictured is first base umpire Ed Montague, who finally convinced Lo Duca that leaving the field might be a good idea. Still, Lo Duca felt he had more to contribute to the discussion. Before he finally exited the premises, the following items had found their way onto the field: Lo Duca's helmet, bat, elbow guard, shin guards, and chest protector. A for effort, in my book.
I only saw it once on Baseball Tonight, but Lo Duca's tirade scores well on the MWS for several reasons. One, the count - it takes a lot to get thrown out of a game in mid-count. Two, the angry face - it actually made me laugh out loud. Three, the littering of the field - originality can be hard, but throwing your catching equipment definitely passes the test. Final score? We're talking something in the 7.9 range - mighty impressive, possibly won't be topped this season.