As I turned off the computer last night, I was pondering Tyler Colvin getting seriously injured with a bat shard and Jason La Rue’s career apparently ending due to an assault by a Reds pitcher. Then I picked up the book I’m reading about baseball in the 70s, “Big Hair and Plastic Grass.” In the space of a few short pages I came across anecdotes of two incidents I hadn’t thought about in years:
- The big brawl between the Reds and Mets in the 1973 NLCS, capped by a player — Buzz Capra — getting sucker punched by Reds pitcher Pedro Borbon; and
- Dodgers catcher Steve Yeager getting hit with pieces from an exploding bat while standing on the on deck circle in 1976, piercing his esophagus, and requiring surgery to remove the shards from his throat.
Baseball is a sport which clings strongly to its past, but this is ridiculous.