Davey Johnson and his sports radio pals were discussing the J.A. Happ incident Wednesday morning, which wasn’t at all funny. But then Johnson used it to transition to a different sort of discussion, which was moderately amusing.
“It’s really not a contact sport, but we’re hitting the ball around at 100 miles an hour and if it goes at us and we don’t catch it in the glove and it hits us on our body, it can hurt us,” Johnson told the Junkies on 106.7 The Fan. “I think we can go overboard in trying to protect everybody. You know, we’re playing a sport, there’s risk involved. I think it’s ludicrous to have first-base coaches have to wear helmets. Pay attention. Pay attention….
“Hey, I got hit in the privates in spring training,” he later said. “I’m not even gonna mention his name. It was an opposing player. Hit me right in there. That’s part of it, you know? It wasn’t the first time, either. I managed to close my legs just at the right time. I was paying attention, I saw it coming, I couldn’t do anything but try to catch it or get out of the way. Couldn’t get out of the way.”
Then Johnson was asked whether every big-league infielder wears a cup.
“I mean, not all of them,” he said. “I’m not gonna go into that, but it’s amazing. That was my confidence, that was my courage. They do it. I don’t know how. I’ll tell you one thing it does do, it makes your hands quicker.”
Is there a more reliable sports-radio interview currently employed in the D.C. sports world than Davey Johnson? There aren’t many, anyhow.
BEST BOBBLEHEAD NIGHT
Cheers to the Bethesda Big Train, who are planning a Shirley Povich bobblehead night at Povich Field in Bethesday during their June 24 game against the Vienna River Dogs. For details, go here.
BOOK READING OF THE WEEK
Las Vegas sports writer Rob Miech, who recently published an updated version of his book “Phenom: The Making of Bryce Harper,” will be speaking about Harper and his book at the University Club Thursday night. The talk is the inaugural event of The Great Washington Writers Series; the per-person cost is $55, which includes a wine and cheese reception and an autographed copy of Phenom, which details Harper’s season with the College of Southern Nevada. To attend, RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MINOR LEAGUE BEER RUN
This season the Bowie Baysox will hold not one but two 1K beer runs around their warning track. Via press release: “The first beer run will be held Saturday, May 25 before a game against the Trenton Thunder at 6:35 p.m. The second beer run will be held Sunday, June 23 before a game against the Altoona Curve at 2:05 p.m. Each run will take place along the warning track before the scheduled game and will include three beers, one for each lap around the track.”
QUOTES OF THE NIGHT
Rafael Soriano had been lobbying Ian Desmond to join him in untucking. Via Kilgore:
“I’d been telling him, ‘You got to do it,’ ” Soriano said. “The first two or three games, he didn’t do it. I say, ‘Bro, why?’ ”
“At first, he got mad I wasn’t doing it,” Desmond said. “I said, ‘Hey, I got to think about it. You’re throwing a couple too many balls. Let me make sure that you’re the real thing.’ I wanted to do it. I’m not going to leave him on the island out there by himself.”
WHAT TO WATCH TODAY
The Nats host the Tigers at 7 on MASN. The Caps visit the Rangers for Game 4 at 7:30 on Comcast SportsNet. All TV and radio listings are here.