Baseball games linger beyond three hours, usually for no good reason. The
There is no shortage of concerns for the good folks in the commissioner's office to address. So what pressing issue did a high-ranking league official take up with the Dodgers this week?
A machine that dispenses soap bubbles.
When a Dodgers player hits a home run, the team celebrates with a bubble machine. Before Tuesday's game against the
That word did not get to all the players, or to the video crew. When
As Uribe trotted around the bases, the players gathered for the dugout celebration. Uribe danced with
"My initial thought was, somebody forgot," catcher
"I thought the batteries were out," outfielder
The bubble machine was back Wednesday, at
Did the Dodgers negotiate a compromise with MLB, or did they unilaterally decide to bring back the bubble machine?
No one would say. The ban of the bubble machine was baffling. The refusal of Dodgers officials and MLB executives to discuss it was even more baffling.
Torre, the former manager of the Dodgers, was asked through a league spokesman why the Dodgers were asked to turn off the machine and whether the Angels or any umpires had complained about its use.
"We respectfully decline comment right now," MLB spokesman Mike Teevan said.
The Dodgers players wondered what all the fuss was about.
"We don't disrespect anybody," infielder
If any other team had taken exception to the bubble machine, Ellis said, he would have heard about it — from an opposing hitter while he was catching or from an opposing first baseman after he had reached base.
"No one has ever mentioned the bubbles," Ellis said.
"Everybody has their own way to celebrate a home run. Ours includes a prop. So does Milwaukee, a guy sliding down a slide. So does New York, with a big apple popping up in center field. So many teams are firing off fireworks.
"It's fun for the fans. It's a little innocent thing. This game is serious enough as it is. We get criticized enough for being stoic."
Ethier, in his ninth season with the Dodgers, has seen his share of controversy. He had no idea why there would be a controversy surrounding a bubble machine.