by Adam Best, Pacman Jonesin'
The Kansas City Royals are hosting "George Brett Powder Blue Pine Tar T-Shirt Night" tonight for the team's game against the New York Yankees. For those of you who aren't familiar with the legendary "pine tar incident," here's a summary from Wikipedia:
"On July 24, 1983, the Royals were playing the Yankees at Yankee Stadium. In the top of the ninth inning, Brett came up to bat against Goose Gossage, his old rival. Brett hit a two-run homer, to put the Royals up 5-4. After Brett rounded the bases, Yankees manager Billy Martin calmly walked out of the dugout and used home plate to measure the amount of pine tar, a legal substance used by hitters to improve their grip, on Brett's bat. Martin cited an obscure rule that stated the pine tar on a bat could extend no further than 18 inches. Brett's pine tar extended about 24 inches. Earlier in the season, the Yankees had noted Brett's habit of adding pine tar further than the allowed 18 inches, but waited until a crucial time to point it out to the umpires.At the time I was a five-year-old Royals fan, so I really don't even actually remember the incident. Of course, I've become more than familiar with the incident over the years after watching the footage of what transpired roughly about as many times as I've heard Barry Bonds' name uttered on SportsCenter.
"I've never seen this," said sportscaster and ex-Yankee Bobby Murcer on WPIX as he watched McClelland measure the bat across the plate. "I never have either," said Murcer's partner, Frank Messer. A few moments later, the home plate umpire, Tim McClelland, signaled Brett out.
The normally mild-mannered Brett charged out of the dugout, enraged, and was immediately ejected. An incredulous Messer:
"Look at this!...He is out, and having to be forcibly restrained from hitting plate umpire Tim McClelland. And the Yankees have won the ball game 4 to 3!"
Anyway, this got me thinking -- what if other pro sports teams stopped taking their history so seriously? While it's too soon for home teams to poke fun at Bonds or dog Ookie, I think looking further back could be, dare I say, healthy.
Steve Carroll taught us all that there is nothing funnier than a 40-year-old virgin, especially when he's a pro athlete who chose that path. This shirt would take some heat off of Kobe, Kupchak and Phil, and remind Lake Show fans of much happier days.
Tennessee Titans - "Alfred Haynesworth Presents Curb-Bite Night"
Nothing will make the Music City fans forget about Pacman Jones quicker than the fond recollections of Haynesworth trying to stomp an opponent to death with his cleat. A sure-fire hit down in Nashville.
Seattle Sonics - "Shawn Kemp's SuperSonic Father's Day"
Now that Kevin Durant is a Sonic, Seattlites can enjoy a good chuckle at the Jet City's most infamous father's expense. Kemp taught us all that becoming a father is such a beautiful experience, you'll want to do it over and over, and not necessarily with the same women either. Word.
Green Bay Packers - "Mark Chmura's Hot Tub Appreciation Day"
An immortal quote from none other than Matthew McConaughey (as Wooderson, Dazed and Confused), best captures the spirit of this day:
"That's what I love about these high school girls, man. I get older, they stay the same age."This shirt is sure to have everybody up at Lambeau leapin'.
Now it's time for you to chime in with your best T-shirt-giveaway day ideas...