Major League Baseball players who don't wear protective cups, guys like New York Mets right-hander LaTroy Hawkins, must know they are taking a calculated risk. They do it for physical comfort because, even in this day and age of advanced engineering, cups can feel cumbersome *down there*.
Well, Hawkins won the lottery in the worst possible way Wednesday night. Pitching against Jerry Hairston of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the ninth inning, Hawkins fielded a sharp grounder back to the mound with his unprotected groin.
And it hurt. A lot.
Hawkins managed to pick up the ball and throw out Hairston at first. With Andre Ethier coming to bat as a pinch hitter, Dodgers staff went to check on Hawkins. Later in the New York Daily News, he said:
“I thought I could get through it,” said Hawkins, who took two warm-up pitches with trainer Ray Ramirez, manager Terry Collins and pitching coach Dan Warthen all watching before facing Ethier.
Regardless, Ethier hit a tying two-run home run, and Mets would fall 4-2 in 12 innings. Afterward, Hawkins offered this PG-rated quote about how it felt:
— LaTroy Hawkins (@LaTroyHawkins32) August 15, 2013
The New York Post published a more detailed (NSFW) version:
"It was a direct hit — no cup,” said Hawkins, who remained in agony after the game. “When I lifted my leg, I could feel my balls in my throat, but I thought I could get through it. I feel like I got kicked by a mule, and it hurts.”
As Deadspin said, it's one of the great quotes in baseball history.
Reporter Marc Carig called the session with Hawkins, "Maybe the most excruciating postgame interview I've ever been involved with."
He wasn't even the guy who took a shot to the groin. And yet, there's a something of a psychic bond that forms among beings with testicles. It's almost like we could feel Hawkins' pain. Almost.
No bueno indeed.