Aug. 1, 2012. The night the music died at Daytona Beach’s Jackie Robinson Ballpark.
The music in question was “Three Blind Mice,” a little ditty from Daytona Cubs “music man” Derek Dye that sat poorly with home-plate umpire Mario Seneca.
Dye was inspired to play the song in the eighth inning, with Cubs Manager Brian Harper arguing a call at first base. Just as quickly, Seneca was inspired to eject him with a curt “You’re gone! No more music!”
No more player introductions, either.
“We've just entered the twilight zone at Jackie Robinson Ballpark,” the Daytona Cubs posted on Facebook. “Our music man, Derek Dye, has been EJECTED from tonight's game. The umpire, Mario Seneca, was apparently not happy when Derek played ‘Three Blind Mice’ after a questionable call. With no music system, a fan has stepped up to call out player introductions from the stands.”
Cubs General Manager Brady Ballard told the Daytona Beach News Journal he thought the clip was harmless but “there are rules,” Ballard said. “It probably violated the rules, but again, there's been discussion on whether it was an overreaction.”
Seneca responded on Facebook: “The good news is that I called my league president (Chuck Murphy) afterwards, and he said I did the correct thing. His opinion is pretty much the only one that matters, since he's my boss.”
And Dye? Well, the 21-year-old intern from the University of Illinois is famous, even if he’ll be out of the press box and selling tickets for tonight’s “Thirsty Thursday” game. Such is the life of an intern.
If nothing else, I have a new pick-up line... “Hey, my name’s Derek and I’ve been ejected from a pro baseball game.” It’s bulletproof.— Derek Dye (@DerekDye) August 2, 2012