-M. gets punked

For those of you who have read Three Nights in August, the portrayal of Dave Duncan is pretty dead on. He’s definitely a stoic character, very blunt and honest and typically a man of few words. He has a sense of humor, but he’s not a jokester by any means.

So when Dunc played a joke on me in a postgame briefing with all of the writers, well, let’s just say it worked.

Towards the end of the session, I asked him about Dennis Dove, who has thrown very well and absolutely blew away threw hitters in the ninth inning today. Dove was pitching at 93-94 and hit 97 mph, and nobody was getting around on him.

Dunc’s response, completely straight-faced: "I think we’re probably going to send him out tomorrow. Youcan’t pitch like that in the big leagues, like he did today."

Yikes, I’m thinking. There goes that feature. I wondered if maybe that fastball was straight, and he was suggesting that a straight fastball like that would get pounded by legit big league hitters. There was a pause. I am told the look on my face was priceless. Then, after a beat or two, Dunc followed it up with:

"That’s too good. We don’t like those guys that throw 95, 96."

And then I realized I had been punked. And there was laughter in the room.

Look for more on Dove on MLB.com tonight. And other outlets, as well. The dude was really impressive.

-M.

currently playing on the iPod: REM, Murmur

(go Butler!)

8 Comments

You should base your whole article on his comments as if you didn’t catch on to his punking. Oh it’s even close to April 1st. “Dunc not Looking for Speed, Accuracy”

That’s hilarious!

Dude…you met Ashton Kutcher and didn’t tell me?

It’s great to know you and Dave can joke around sometimes. It also demonstrates a mutual respect for each other. I like it!

Matthew, I have a question. I read that Josh Kinney’s surgery was successful, and I am glad for his sake. Is there someway we could e-mail him or send actual cards to him to boost his spirits as he endures therapy? I would like to communicate my good wishes to him. Maybe the Cardinals could set up a temporary e-mail account just for that purpose–something he could access. Any possibility?

lindaphayes: That sounds like a great idea, maybe that’ll work out. I wish there was an easy way to send well wishes to any player, but I guess that it would get too hard to sift through if they were all easy to email all the time. It would be nice to encourage the DL guys, especially the younger/newer ones who might not know they have fans yet.

I have read Three Nights in August and it is an AWESOME book, especially for baseball fans. The one line I will never forget is where they talk about how Dunc got his nickname “The Quiet Assassin” as a catcher with the A’s, then later he re- affirmed the nickname as a pitching coach. George Bell, a member of the BlueJays, was charging at one of his pitchers after a HBP, and as the story goes, Bell charges the mound and Dunc leaps out of the dugout chases him around the infield yelling, “I’m going to BLEEPING kill you!” That is proceless!! I’ll always respect Dunc.

Three Nights in August was great. Dunc is great. Just wanted to respond to your final comment . . . Go Gators! I think Eckstein would agree.

How is little Duncan doing with his defense so far? I’ve noticed something like 5 home runs in about 50 at bats. Have the home runs come of big league pitchers? A home run every ten at bats is pretty remarkable. What was his rate late season and can we expect this to continue?

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