Friday, March 22, 2013
Vintage Fridays: Earl Weaver, 1970 Topps #148
I owe a debt of gratitude to Camden Chat's j.q. higgins (if that IS his real name...) for unearthing this gem, which unfolded on this date back in 1981. The O's had been scheduled to play an exhibition game against the Royals a few days prior, and Earl had gone and gotten himself into an argument with the umpires over the lineup card. As he was wont to do, the Orioles skipper got so incensed that he pulled his team off of the field and forfeited the game. In stepped MacPhail, the American League President at the time, to levy a three-game suspension from Grapefruit League contests.
Yes, Earl even managed to get himself into hot water when the games didn't count.
There's a Sarasota Herald-Tribune article posted on the Google News Archive. I would recommend reading it just for the quotes. MacPhail is as even-handed as you would expect a league authority to be, but Weaver can't resist needling a higher authority. He threatens to treat his suspension as a "sit-out", a peaceful means of protesting the shabby work done by the A. L. prez and his staff. The money quote from Earl:
"[My sit-out] is in support more or less of President Reagan's program. He wants more productivity and wants us to eliminate stupidity, waste, bureaucratic uselessness, and red tape."
We miss you already, Earl.