HOW THE TURNTABLES?
Let's just say the vibe in Philly was very different for Astros, Mattress Mack in Game 4
The night after the Phillies put the Astros behind the 8 ball with a 7-0 whitewash of Houston in Game 3, the Astros bounced back in spectacular, historic fashion on Wednesday to tie the World Series at two games apiece.
The Astros returned the shutout favor in spades, no-hitting the Phillies 5-0 behind starting pitcher Cristian Javier and relievers Bryan Abreu, Rafael Montero and Ryan Pressly. The Astros scored all their runs in the fifth inning highlighted by Alex Bregman’s bases-loaded double. The Astros lockdown was the second no-hitter in World Series history, preceded only by Don Larsen’s perfect game for the Yankees in 1956.
It was such a dominant performance by the Astros that the normally raucous Philadelphia crowd was rendered speechless. In fact, it was so quiet in Citizens Bank Park that fans couldn’t even ‘nad it up to hassle Phillies public enemy No. 1, Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale.
It was a different story Tuesday night. The Phillies crushed five home runs, and put the Astros in timeout so their fans could spew their fury at McIngvale.
McInvale v. Phillies Fans became the story of the night.
While leaving the ballpark, Mattress Mack encountered some loudmouth Phils fans. One dared to call Jose Altuve the “biggest cheater ever.”
That was the clincher for Mack, a beloved folk hero and philanthropist in Houston. Saint Mack is an unapologetic Astros fan “all day long until the day I die.” Mack unleashed a X-rated torrent of swear words that would make a sailor blush.
“F-you, a--hole, f-you, f-you, a--hole!”
Whoa! Where’d that come from? A video of Mack losing his cool went viral, surprising his fans in Houston, and probably shocking the “Astros rally nuns” he supports at Minute Maid Park. The Dominican Sisters of Mary Immaculate Province will have to forgive Mack’s salty language.
Mack wasn’t backing down and for a moment it looked like it was go time. Fortunately, a few Gallery Furniture employees were on hand to hold Mack back … from most likely catching a butt whupping. I’m not a carnival worker, but Mack is 71 and weighs about 135 pounds. Pick on somebody your own size. Even Mack wouldn’t bet on his chances in a fistfight against psycho, Yuengling-sloshed, cheesesteak-stuffed Philly fans.
The next day, a reflective Mack tweeted a passage from the Holy Bible: “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:21.” I’m not familiar with the Epistle to the Romans, but I doubt it contains F-bombs and sphincter references.
On Wednesday, Mack gave “exclusive interviews” to every TV station, radio station, podcast and print outlet between Philadelphia and Houston to give his account of his spicy clash with Philly fans. Imagine that, Mack the center of publicity, stealing the show.
With every interview, he gave a variation of “I was told that Philadelphia fans were the worst fans ever and I still underestimated how bad they are. We were walking out and some drunk old man said to pull the jerseys off all the Astros and show their buzzers. Then he said that Jose Altuve will never make the Hall of Fame because he is the biggest cheater ever and that’s when I lost it. Talk bad about my boys and I go crazy.”
Note to Mack: Don’t take the Philly fans’ bait. Altuve doesn’t need anybody fighting his fights. You stick to selling furniture, he’ll take care of batting .300.
Mack should take Mark Twain’s advice to heart: “Never argue with stupid people. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.”
Or as Kenny Rogers put it: “Walk away from trouble if you can. It won’t mean you’re weak if you turn the other cheek.”
Of course Mack’s uncharacteristic, profanity-laced outburst could have been triggered by the massive $15 million bet he has riding on the Astros. If the Astros take the Series, Mack will earn a $75 million haul, the largest sports bet payoff ever.
Wait … $75 mil? Forget being the Coward of Harris County, Mack should have kicked those Philly fans’ asses.