15 years ago, Bobby Valentine, then the manager of the New York Mets was ejected for arguing with an umpire. While this is not necessarily historic, what will always be remembered is what Valentine did after he was ejected. He did not have a meltdown which would make Lou Piniella, Lloyd McClendon, or Phillip Wellman proud. Oh no, he took it a step further. Valentine returned to the dugout in a disguise which would have made Hollywood proud.
This disguise by Valentine will forever be how I think of him. Not his winning 1,186 games during his managerial career. Not of his impact upon the Japanese Pacific League. Not the baseball analysis with various broadcasting stations. For me Bobby Valentine will always be the man in disguise. The mustache and glasses standing in the dugout during an extra innings game against the Toronto Blue Jays. It reminds a moment in which I cannot help but smile.
Every parent tells their kids that they are responsible for their actions. Valentine was held accountable for his actions. He was fined and suspended for his antics. Everyone is remembered for something. Willie Mays is remembered for “The Catch”, Carlton Fisk is remembered for his home run in the 1975 World Series, and Bobby Valentine is remembered for the night he went undercover. Baseball is a game. Too often the game is taken too serious. On a summer night, Bobby Valentine could not stay away from the game he had been ejected from and he left an indelible image for us all to remember and laugh at.