The Bat Flip Saga: Bautista vs. Odor
When you awoke on Wednesday, October 14th, 2015, did you realize what baseball magic you were going to witness that early evening Jays fans? Probably not, but the 'Google Blue Birds Blog Web World' (try to say that fast) are still thinking in front of their MacBooks and finger pressing thoughts about the subject today - especially after the Rougned 'one' Odor's bat flip, admire, strut single against Italy (a country not REALLY known for magical moments with this kind of stitched ball) happened the other night at the World Baseball Classic.
So let's take a second to remember where you were when the strange 7th inning happened, in a David Lynch kind of manner, on that early October 14th evening. Were you at the local pub in your town or city? Your friends house? The SkyDome? A douche bar on King St. West? - Or maybe the Done Right Inn near hipster Trinity Bellwoods park? - Or even the Corner Place near the St. Lawrence Market? Either way, wherever you were that early evening - you do remember, because how could you forget.
I was standing in my tiny rental house in the Beaches, just west of Woodbine St., pacing back and forth with excitement after Edwin Encarnacion squared up the score with his home run in the bottom of the 6th. I had no idea after that inning finished what the baseball Gods would create for the history of MLB time - and that was/is - the bat flip mania. It also gave birth to an old school grudge match (ECW style) now between two bitter rivals from loud parts of North America - in Texas nothing is bigger, but, of course, Ontario.
Let's remember the strange air that slipped in the SkyDome on that October evening:
Now reflecting on that inning, would you have it any other way? From Martin's toss that hit the bat of Shin-Soo Choo, followed by the Rougned One crossing the plate for the go ahead run (because that's how you want to win a series, right?), to eventually, the epic Joey Bats bat flip heard around the world - and here we are today still thinking about it. Why? Because of Odor's bat flip against the Paisanos the other night.
Here's the thing 'Goose' Gossage' (who is the man that really expressed an ill discontent towards Bautista after the bat flip), Joey's bat flip was a defining moment in MLB Blue Birds history - it displayed raw emotion and there is absolutely nothing wrong with some passion. And since then a 'float like a butterfly, sting like a bee' effect has rippled through the Texas vs. Toronto baseball 'knuckleball' wave, from: an Odor-stink of a May punch, to a 3-game Blue Birds ALDS 'would rather get punched in May than get knocked out in October' sweep, to now, and the Venezuelan kid's bat flip the other night.
How can you not love it? It's a 'Muhammad Ali' in a baseball jazzy kind of way fun. What Blue Bird fan didn't love the clown Sid Seixeiro's rant in August, when Texas celebrated a win like they had just won the World Series? I know I did, here it is - in case you missed it and the epic 'choke ... choke ... choke':
None of this would have manifested if it wasn't for that October 14th evening. And this is why we have to love it and its every '90210' storyline twist way. Because who doesn't love (or love to hate) the Texas 'Bat Flip/Fat Lip' shirts? Who doesn't love Ontario (and Canada) who, well, know they're bigger and better than Texas. Who doesn't love the 'Knocked out in October' phrase? The two sides collide on Instagram, Blogs, and Facebook communities year round, and it's - for lack of a better word (actually not lack of a better word) AWESOME.
And I'm not going to come to the defence of Rougned Odor, and how he's become the walking contradiction centrepiece in this bat flip Texas vs. Toronto saga - especially after his 'meatball' bat flip against the Italians, but he's a kid. He's a hot headed and passionate kid from Venezuela who has a hockey 'Canadian' kind of thoughtless temper, as he also instigated a brawl in his first season in Single-A against the Vancouver Canadians. Here it is:
I'm going to repeat myself - I'm not coming to his defence, but as an ex-hockey goalie who got his head knocked in a few times from chirping, I can't really judge the guy. But I know one thing for sure, as a Blue Birds fan - I love to hate him and the Texas Rangers.
I'm not going to present a Bautista bat flip justification rant either, because I don't need to argue, on his behalf, for being in the moment and doing what he did. It's one of the greatest memories I have as a Jays fan, and from that moment - a bat flipping saga and grudge has emerged between these two teams and players.
I say Jays fans - keep chirping Odor and the Rangers because it's fun. And chirp Rougned Odor for his Italian bat flip, admire, strut single in Lamborghini fashion the other night too.
And I also say - Godspeed, Baseball Gods ... thanks for the fun rivalry.