Thursday, September 11, 2008

Elijah Dukes could kill you. But won't.

I am a huge Elijah Dukes fan. HUGE. It wasn't always that way, though. When I heard the Nationals traded for him I was a little apprehensive. After all, I had heard all the horror stories from the media. How this guy was a less than decent human being. Detestable. Threatened to kill his wife. All that.
But then he got here. He got here, and played hard from the word go. I dug his hustle. I dug his bat. I dug his arm. The huge turning point was the video below.

After I saw that, I dug him as a cool guy. Who the fuck couldn't at that point? He had been a model player, and he hadn't hurt/maimed/killed anyone. Plus, he broke out, "That, my friend, is very broke." I use that shit in my everyday conversations now. I also try and break out, "My ass was poking out a bit", but most people I say it to misinterpret it, and it takes forever to explain, so it's not tossed out as often as it should be.
The point of my above ramblings? DOOKS! was the shit last night, nothing less. Here's a brief rundown of what happened in his at-bats last night:
  • 2nd inning; Solo home run. Did he run around the bases as fast as he could have? No. Did he admire his shit like Manny Ramirez? No. Did he come within 850% of being like Francisco Rodriguez after a save? Hell. No. (That's a whole nother column, for a whole nother time.)
  • 4th inning; After an inside pitch from the starting pitcher just missed hitting him (payback for the slow home run trot? Maybe.), Dukes took a few steps toward the pitcher. He mouthed some words ("Bring it on" was quoted from the pitcher), and got restrained by Manny Acta. The umpire issued warnings to both dugouts. What happened after the brief stare-down, and play resumed? A double to left field. You know what else happened? Dukes seemed to ignite the squad. There was a little energy now. What else happened? Pelfrey (the starting pitcher) was no longer pitching inside (Ron Darling, the Mets announcer said as much) to the Nationals. Dukes got in his head, and took away one of the pitchers biggest weapons, the inside part of the plate. That's the kind of guy I want on my squad, dammit! When he was driven home later in the inning, he was walking to the dugout and started hearing some of the extremely intelligent Met's faithful giving him some shit. And by shit, I don't mean the rundown of the latest Booker Prize nominees. What does Dukes do? Pulls out the ol' Degeneration X move. He yells, "I got two words for you" and grabs his crotch toward the NY fans. I love this fucking kid!
  • 5th inning; Dukes is plunked by Pelfrey in the bicep. Does DOOKS! go bat-shit crazy, charging the mound and killing Pelfrey? Fuck no. He takes first base, because he's smart enough to know that a) it was just a pitch that got away from Pelfrey. And b) it was continuing a two out rally. A two out rally that ended up getting the Nationals two more runs. Cool as a fucking cucumber.
  • 7th inning; A line drive out to David Wright. Nothing to see here, folks.
  • 9th inning; Grounds out to second base. As he trots into the dugout, some stock tips from the Mutts fans:
That guy in the white shirt scares the shit out of me. Look at those guns! Does he have a permit to carry those weapons around? Jesus, what a douche.

So, what does our manly man of a right fielder do? Just taunts 'em right back.

You can see the video of it starting at around the 3:15 mark here, if you would like.

Here's the thing that I wanted to convey with that mess I wrote above:
I want that swagger on my team! I want my team to think they're hot shit! I want this emotion. Most of all, I want Elijah Dukes on my fucking squad. Period.


Anonymous said...

Nice counter-point there. Basically, Dukes used his baseball smarts and his reputation to give his team a better chance to win.

I like how Pelfrey basically admitted in the interview how he was about to wet his pants.

Anonymous said...

Amen, my brother.

I do take a bit of an issue with the back-and-forth with those idiot fans. Don't indulge them, because that's what they want. Then they've won. Don't want that.

It's a learning experience for young Dukes. The fact that he made it thru without maiming somebody has to be seen as a positive. The fact that he still wore some of his emotions on his sleeve is a negative. He's gotta find the right balance. In time.

Anonymous said...

No lipstick on him! He's gonna do just fine.