Today marks the born day of my new favorite baseball player of all time. Dock Ellis was a World Series Champion, a starting pitcher for the National League All-Stars, and won 19 games for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
He intentionally hit Reggie Jackson in the face as retaliation for Jackson’s homer off him in that All-Star game.
On May 1, 1974 he purposely went apeshit on Cincinatti’s Big Red Machine, starting off the game by plunking Pete Rose, Joe Morgan, and Dan Driessen, and narrowly missing Tony Perez and Johnny Bench (who almost caught two to the head). Beaning two Hall of Famers and just missing two more = super gully.
I first came across Doc a few months back after he passed away in December 2008. It’s a shame he didn’t have better PR–there’s an HBO movie begging to be made about his eccentric life in baseball and beyond. At the time of his death, he was a drug counselor. But his baseball exploits are numerous, bizarre, and jaw dropping.
I believe the Pittsburgh Pirates, in their dedication to mediocrity the last 20 years, should retire Dock’s number or at least have Dock Ellis Night, where LSD is passed around to fans in wicker baskets, players wear tie died shirts, and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is quickly aired on the jumbotron after the game. This should temporarily erase the fact that Dock’s only Pittsburgh pitching rivals in terms of eccnetricities were Doug Drabek’s glorious mullet/biker ‘stache combo and John Smiley’s oxymoronic death scowl.
For Dock related goodies, check out LSD: The Dock Ellis Experience by Jay Kaplan.
And here’s my favorite song ever made about acid:
Aesop Rock “The Greatest Pac-Man Victory in History”