40 Years Ago, Lee Elia Delivered Baseball’s Most Infamous Rant
On April 28th, 1983, the Chicago Cubs manager, Lee Elia, delivered a three-minute-long tirade that was heard and is still heard throughout history.
The three-minutes, which was fully captured by Les Grobstein of WSCR-AM 670 on his tape recorder, contained a total of 50 profanities, including 30 "F-bombs."
“It sounded like I was cursing the entire Cub kingdom,” Elia told the Chicago Tribune in 1987. “But that’s not true.”
A native of Philadelphia, Elia eventually spent most of his playing days as a shortstop in the minor leagues, but eventually played 80 games with the White Sox in 1966 and 15 with the Cubs in 1968, before taking the reins of the Cubs in 1981.
What Happened That Led To The Tirade?
The Cubs, who at the time had a 5-14 record for the season, and they had just lost 4-3 game to the Los Angeles Dodgers, who had a 14-5 record, in front of less than 10,000 fans.
Lee Smith, the Cubs' pitcher, was booed by the crowd after giving up a go-ahead run to Ken Landreaux in the eighth inning.
The fans booed as the Cubs retreated from the field after their pinch-hitter, Scot Thompson, a .193 hitter that season, struck out in the ninth inning, stranding Keith Moreland.
As Elia walked down the left-field line to the clubhouse after the game, a dozen or so Cub fans threw beer at Moreland shouted at shortstop Larry Bowa.
Here's the full three-minute-long, completely uncensored tirade. Obviously, don't listen to this at work. Or do, if it's your last day.