For Kevin Youkilis, every single at bat is an epic life-and-death struggle, with the fate of the universe seemingly hanging in the balance. It is a Shakespearian drama, in which the meaning of life, the vagaries of fate, and the inevitability of tragedy loom deeply. With a called strike, Youkilis appears to be mortally offended; and should he eventually strikeout, especially by way of a dreaded called strikeout, run for cover, for Youk looks as if his ancestors have been an insulted, his loved one’s violated, and his house burned down. And he’s out for revenge.
This weekend, that inevitable tragedy struck for the Red Sox as Youkilis was called out on strikes and proceeded to shatter his helmet and break his bat into pieces, sending razor-sharp shards of material flying into the dugout. Several players were treated for lacerations and bruises, while two trainers suffered from concussions, making it difficult for them to concentrate while trying to stem the blood flow of the players’ wounds they were treating.
“Youky was blowin’ off some steam, but this went a little too far,” said Terry Francona, who escaped injury when a shard of a broken bat was unable to penetrate his tobacco/bubblegum/sunflower seed/hard-boiled egg stuffed cheek. “We like his intensity, but, hell, if this guy swings and misses during batting practice, we gotta follow him back to the clubhouse because one time we found him taking out a sword and saying he was unfit to live. Heck, if we could get Lugo thinking that way, we’d get that stinking contract off our backs.”