Baseball has a long history of manager tirades. On Wednesday, the sport gained a new — and epic — entry from Pirates manager Derek Shelton, who was ejected following a fiery exchange with umpires about the pitch clock.
Shelton’s ejection looks like a minor squabble compared to the worst the sport has seen. He might want to take notes so he gets his full money’s worth next time.
For starters, the best manager ejections feature enough F-bombs to make “Succession” look like an episode of “Sesame Street.”
Baltimore Orioles manager Earl Weaver had one of the all-time great meltdowns in 1980. At several points, Weaver yelled at umpire Bill Haller, “You’re here for one reason: to f— us good!”
After Weaver threatened Haller with the prospect of not umpiring more Orioles games, the umpire replied, “I would like that.”
Later, after Weaver yelled about being a future Hall of Famer, Haller retorted, “Why? For f—ing up a World Series?”
In 1979, Baltimore lost the World Series to the Pirates in seven games. To Weaver’s credit, he won a World Series in 1970 and made the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1996.
Cursing like a sailor is important part of any meltdown, in sports or otherwise, but props also add to the spectacle.
Former MLBer Wally Backman had an epic one of his own in the minor leagues, ending with him hurling bats and baseballs onto the field and telling the umpires to “pick that s— up, you dumb motherf—–s.”
Former Pirates manager Lloyd McClendon took a different route in 2001. Instead of throwing stuff on the field, he memorably took first base with him. Nationals manager Davey Martinez did his own version of that act in 2021.
Lou Pinella had his fair share of memorable tirades over the years, including in 1997 with the Mariners when he kicked up a dirt storm, much to the delight of Ken Griffey Jr.
The history of manager tirades isn’t complete without mentioning Phillip Wellman’s meltdown for the Braves’ Double-A affiliate in 2007, when he army crawled to the pitcher’s mound and tossed the rosin back to the home plate umpire as if it were a grenade.