Larry Bowa breaks 122 year old rule and probably a few blood vessels too.

Somewhere these two men are smiling

“One of the dumbest ejections I’ve ever had,”

Ed Montague, a 31-year veteran whose report to the Commissioner’s Office will also include how Bowa, in full tantrum mode Tuesday night, repeatedly bumped manager Joe Torre into the umpire during the ensuing meltdown.

Larry Bowa… a man born a century too late.

Larry who earlier made news this spring with his comments regarding the new edict from the higher ups in Baseball that all coaches would be required to wear a helmet, after facing ejection for that belief Bowa relented and wore a head piece. last night he venture too far out of the designated coaching box and loe and behold it was another incident.

When queried of it Montague said umpires have received a memo ordering enforcement of the rule that coaches not venture outside the coach’s boxes toward the field of play or home plate. The rule goes along with the edict for coaches to wear helmets to ensure their safety after the accidental death of Minor League coach Mike Coolbaugh last year.

So we see that there is a new rule…. or is it just a stricter enforcement of an old rule?

A real old rule maybe?

In the late 1880’s there were two leagues, the National League and the American Association, the AA was more of a Midwestern league in the power structure and two of the strongest franchises were the Reds and the St Louis Browns, who were owned by a local saloon keeper who sat in his box on the 3rd base side and blew a whistle to get the players attention, but I digress.

The Browns main men were Charles Comisky (future White Sox boogeyman) and Arlie Latham, the “Freshest man on Erath” One of the many parts of the early game that is fascinating is that morphing of the rules and the incidents that create these metamorphosis’s

In the late 1880’s the Browns were the premier team in the AA, they game was rougher, louder and more bawdy back then and the Browns had a firm grasp on the advantageous that psychological abuse could have on contributing to their win column. In those days the re were no coaching staff for the manager to deploy tasks to. The manager was often a player himself and when the team was at bat the manager and another player would take a position next to the 1st and 3rd base bags to direct the players on the base paths.

In those days it was common for the “coaches” to spend more time pacing back and forth on the baseline , hurling obscenities at the opposing pitcher, trying there best to throw them off their game, often succeeding… which is evident by the introduction of Rule 50 was introduced in 1887 and is displayed below, taken from the Spalding Guide of 1889 and evidently it addresses the type of behavior described above in a language that is now somewhat dated, but still can be applied to what happened last night to Bowa. Rule 50 is associated with Rule 7 of the playing lines and that is the rule that describes the box that the coach is supposed to be confined to.

These 122 year old rules were instituted for one reason many years ago and the recent death of Coolbaugh has instituted an enforcement of the ancient credo to the letter, and I doubt many a man will approach change with the Luddite glee that possesses Larry… but ya have to wonder..

What’s next?

Blocking the plate?

Leave a Reply