Ruben Amaro Jr. has a long history with the Philadelphia Phillies. Amaro Jr. was a bat boy in the ‘80s, a player during the ‘90s, he was in the front office for their last World Series, and in the broadcast booth for arguably the best unintentional sexual innuendo in team history.
As the Phillies were getting rocked by the Atlanta Braves Tuesday night, Amaro Jr. and play-by-play voice Tom McCarthy were left trying to fill the entertainment void caused by a blowout. To help, Amaro Jr. shared a memory from his time as a Phillies bat boy in the early ‘80s while his dad was the team’s first base coach.
“Interestingly, Pete Rose used to use a bat that was manufactured in Japan,” Amaro Jr. said. “The Mizuno bat, when I was bat boy for the Phillies.”
The interesting fact peaked McCarthy’s interest, who added, “oh really?” Amaro Jr. proceeded to respond with a punchline that was so perfect you can’t help but wonder if he was baiting McCarthy.
“It was the hardest wood I’ve ever touched,” Amaro Jr. replied.
This is awesome! https://t.co/uD4L6MyhXM
— Ruben Amaro, Jr. (@RAJr_20) August 3, 2022
Had the quip been followed by a long pause to signal the announcers may have been laughing off mic, I would have believed the “hardest wood” line was intentional. But Amaro Jr. broke the brief silence after just three seconds to add that Rose was one of only a few players to use that bat.
“I know he wore their apparel,” McCarthy chimed in.
Not only did the comment seem unintentional, but I’m not sure McCarthy even caught the innuendo.
Keeping an audience engaged or just keeping yourself as a broadcaster awake during a blowout can be a challenge. SNY has asked Gary Cohen, Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling to shuffle through baseball cards during blowouts and they even experimented with taking phone calls from the audience for some of the Mets wearisome seasons. Amaro Jr., however, entertained the audience by taking things (Rose’s bat) into his own hands.