If you’re a Dodger, there are just certain things in life you never do. You don’t take the last plate of pasta away from Tommy Lasorda, you don’t criticize Vin Scully and you never, ever do any harm to Sandy Koufax.
Alas, Ethier is now guilty of the third, and it’s too bad, because I always kinda liked him, whichever Ethier he was that day.
But Friday during batting practice at Camelback Ranch in Arizona, Ethier had the misfortune of sending a line drive off the head of Koufax. Amazingly, no blue bolt crackled from the heavens to strike Ethier down.
Luckily Koufax came out of it OK, with a cut that did not require stitches, but the entire camp’s breath was taken away. No word on whether he bled blue.
Now clearly, hitting Koufax was unintentional. If Ethier was doing it deliberately, he would have nailed one of the other three outfielders. Still, it was Koufax, the closest thing to a deity the Dodgers have ever produced in Los Angeles.
“Your heart kind of leaps out of your body right there for a second,” Ethier said.
Anytime someone is hit in the head by a line drive it’s scary. You hit Koufax, however, that flash before your eyes was your life.
Hard to deal a player when everybody knows you have to make a move, but maybe the Dodgers can pick up a nice left-handed middle reliever. I will miss Ethier’s Korean barbecue recommendations.