Wednesday, August 7, 2013

August 7, 1956: Ted Williams Fined For Spitting

On August 7, 1956, after being booed for dropping a flyball in the 11th inning of a game against the Yankees in Boston, Ted Williams made a spectacular play to end the inning then ran in and spit toward the crowd and the press box at Fenway. More boos rang out after Williams reacted to the crowd's displeasure for his misplay in the outfield. Williams would end up getting the game winning rbi with a bases loaded walk on the bottom of the 11th but that didn't stop the team owner Tom Yawkey from letting him know that his actions were unacceptable. Yawkey heard the incident on the radio and put a call into the team's GM Joe Cronin and told him to fine the slugger $5,000 which would be the equivalent of more than $40,000 by today's standards. The ever defiant Williams made no apologies for the incident, he paid the fine and would say "I'm not sorry for what I did. I was right and I would spit again at the same fans that booed me today. Nobody's going to stop me from spitting." Williams never did acclimate real well when it came to dealing with fans and media, he had several run ins with both parties throughout his career. It was something that the fans in Boston just had to accept as Williams was one of the best hitters to ever swing a bat.

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