During yesterday’s Phillies-Astros game, in which Hunter Pence was mostly the story, first baseman Carlos Lee went for a ball just inside the line and, probably because Lee is 35-years-old and almost 300 pounds, he lost his balance and started a dead-end stumble into first base umpire Hunter Wendelstedt as the ball trickled into right. The collision was funny and could probably stand on its own:
But according to SB Nation, there’s a little bit of history between Lee and Wendelstedt that can’t go unmentioned here:
On August 9, 2004, the White Sox were playing the Indians, and Carlos Lee hit a first-inning single. He took off for second and reached safely, but was nevertheless called out stealing by second-base umpire Hunter Wendelstedt, who put himself in bad position to evaluate the bang-bang play. The inning ended there, and after Ozzie Guillen came out on the field to argue, he was ejected.
When you’re in the league as long as Lee has been (1999), you’re more than likely going to have a few run ins with umpires you’ve disagreed with in the past, but I don’t know how often one gets to (accidentally) knock over that umpire you once wanted to kick dirt on and not get suspended for it (although it appeared Lee took the worst of that impact). An unathletic umpire taking a spill is pretty funny to watch on loop and probably embarassing for said umpire. It’s the perfect revenge without intending revenge at all.