One of the best things about stretch-drive baseball is seeing the on-field celebrations. Lots of spontaneity, lots of men acting like boys, giddy fans, weepy managers -- it's got all that great stuff. On Monday night, the A's, who clinched a playoff berth, and the Nats, who sewed up the NL East, did it just right, as you'll soon see.
First, let's go to Oakland, where manager Bob Melvin, in what's surely a testimony to his relationship with his players, receives from Josh Reddick an "honor" normally reserved for those who hit some flavor of walk-off.
Buck Showalter would not abide such mischief.
During the on-field celebration last night, a beer-soaked Gio Gonzalez grabbed Mark Lerner in a bear hug.
"The pimp with the limp," he screamed, referring to the Nats owner's hobble after having foot surgery in July. "The pimp with the limp!"
I'm fairly certain that Gonzalez is the only guy in that clubhouse with the stones to call Lerner that.
It was perhaps a rough day to be an authority figure in Oakland and Washington, but presumably Messrs. Melvin and Lerner will grant free passes to Reddick and Gonzalez this time around.