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How could I forget Hernandez and Strawberry on photo day?

Big League Stew

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When I was writing this morning's top 10 MLB teammate fights, I was doing it with the knowledge that I was definitely going to leave some classics out on the table. Blogging is a game of first drafts.

However, I also knew that it'd start a good remembrance of some teammate fights from the past, which is why I asked the Stewies to come through for me and pick up the slack in the comments.

And you did, pointing out the Ted Lilly-John Gibbons in '06, the Lou Piniella-Rob Dibble in '92, Lenny Randle-Frank Lucchesi in '77, Frank Thomas-Dick Allen in '65, Goose Gossage-Cliff Johnson in the shower in '79 and Don Sutton-Steve Garvey in '79.

Still, I'm upset with myself for not remembering the best of all teammate fights ... Darryl Strawberry vs. Keith Hernandez (pictured right, with soap star Susan Lucci) in front of the media at the Mets' photo day during spring training '89. In terms of in-house squabbles, I'm not sure anything can top that. (I have to ask, though: If it took place on photo day, why can't I find any photos of it?)

The best description of the fight comes from one of my favorite baseball books of all time, "The Worst Team Money Could Buy: The Collapse of the New York Mets" by beat writers Bob Klapisch and John Harper. You can find a preview of the book at Google Books, but it's worth a summer pickup and not just for its classic list of the "Five Traits Ballplayers Look For In Women" (Don't ask. I can't print any of them here.) It's probably the best documentation of how a baseball clubhouse and all of its parts — players, coaches, front office and media — interact.

Follow the jump for the Klapisch' retelling of the Hernandez-Strawberry bout, which had been in the works for awhile:

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