Aug. 21, 1990. Riverfront Stadium. Dutch Rennert called Barry Larkin out at first at the end of the fifth inning. Reds manager Lou Piniella comes out to argue the call. He throws his hat down. Rennert ejects him on the spot. But wait, there’s more. Piniella pulls up first base and throws it, and, dissatisfied with his first toss, picks it up and hurls it again, sending it flying and rolling all the way into short right.
“I just saw it (the base) laying next to my feet,” Piniella said after the game. “That just happened. You come in here and say to yourself, ‘What the hell is a 47-year-old man doing that for?’ I don’t know. It’s frustration. The bag was lying there, and I grabbed it. Dutch Rennert is a fine umpire, and I didn’t want to show him up. I’ll talk to him tomorrow before the game.”
The Reds would go on to win the 1990 World Series defeating the heavily-favored A’s in four games – all in Piniella’s first season with the Reds. Incredibly, Sweet Lou and the Reds would part ways just two years later after the 1992 season. Piniella would go on to have successful runs with the Mariners, Devil Rays, and Cubs. Piniella retired today to be with his ailing mother – and you can watch his tearful press conference here.
Lou – thanks for throwing the base, kicking the dirt, fighting with Dibble, and bringing us a World Series.