George Brett and the Pine Tar Game

One of the wonderful charms of YouTube is the old footage being made available again, often to brand-new audiences. Below is video of a crazed George Brett charging the umpire during the "Pine Tar Game" on July 24, 1983. Brett had just put the Kansas City Royals ahead with a two-out, ninth-inning home run off Yankees closer Rich Gossage. Yankees manager Billy Martin approached the home plate umpire to ask that the spread of sticky pine tar on Brett's bat be measured to see if it violated Rule 1.10(b), which forbids any substance more than eighteen inches up the handle. Martin had known for weeks that Brett's pine tar was illegal. but waited until the right moment to use his knowledge. When the umpire nullified the home run and called Brett out, the game ended with the Yankees winning.

American League President Lee MacPhail later overruled the umpire, restored the home run and had the teams replay the end of the game a month later. Both teams traveled to Yankee Stadium on an off-day. The replay took twelve minutes (and sixteen pitches) and was delayed by Martin's appeal that Brett had not touched all the bases. A different umpire crew was on hand, but they possessed a signed affidavit from the earlier umpires saying that Brett had indeed stepped on every base. Martin was ejected from the replay, and Brett wasn't there either. He stayed on the team plane playing cards. Brett later told the Hall of Fame that the pine tar incident "was the greatest thing that ever happened in my career."

Hat tip to Blue Notes

August 26, 2006 10:39 AM • Native Intelligence • Email the editor
 

© 2003-2014   •  About LA Observed  •  Contact the editor
LA Biz Observed
2:07 PM Sat | The funeral for Mark Lacter will be held Sunday, Nov. 24 at 12 noon at Hillside Memorial Park, 6001 W. Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles 90045. Reception to follow.
Native Intelligence
Iris Schneider | More than 300 fans of the written word, Hollywood-style, packed the Ricardo Montalban Theater on Vine Street Saturday night for the latest performance presented by The Blacklist.
Donna Perlmutter | Verdi's "La Traviata" can withstand almost anything. It's nearly indestructible, and sometimes irresistible.
Ellen Alperstein | Members of the L.A. Zoo Safari Society needn't trek to Africa to pet an Angolan python.
Jon Christensen and Mark Gold | Two California lakes: the Salton Sea, a festering manmade disaster in the desert, and Tulare Lake, a phantom lake, dried up by agriculture in the southern San Joaquin Valley. Not the first places one might expect to find hope in the Anthropocene.
Jenny Burman | It's a separate misfortune to attract harm to other people, and Marisol knew it, but she had made her decision.
Al Martinez | Martinez walks a lonely road once crowded with friends and colleagues such as John Wiebusch. Time has diminished the crowd and left only shards of memory.
Gary Leonard | Take My Picture Gary Leonard appears weekly at LA Observed.
Bill Boyarsky
Santa Monica’s Bergamot Station Art Center and its old industrial surroundings is a dramatic example of how rail transit lines are changing the appearance, the employment and residential style of a Southland shaped by the automobile
Jenny Burman
Before I lived in Echo Park, there was a tiny 1920s bungalow-cottage-standalone house on N. Occidental in Silver Lake. I...
Here in Malibu
PCH just south of Mugu Rock -- still one of my favorite local drives....