On Thursday June 11th 1970 Dock Ellis was in San Diego for business. Figuring he didn’t have to work that day, he went to Los Angeles to spend the day chilling out and dropping acid with friends . By noontime he had already dropped a few tabs of LSD, when his boss called him. It was no longer the 11th but in fact it was now Friday June 12th, and he did have to come in to work. Dock Ellis, you see, was a starting pitcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and was scheduled to start the first game of a doubleheader against the San Diego Padres at 6 pm. He rushed back down to San Diego, still on his acid trip when he entered San Diego Stadium. What follows is one the wackiest games in MLB history
Inning 1: Dock Ellis took the mound and realized immediately if he was going to win this game he needed to throw in the general direction of the batter that wasn’t the Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat
Inning 2: Spiders! Spiders! OH MY GOD THERE’S SO MANY SPIDERS!
Inning 3: I’ll let Joe Friday explain it…
Inning 4: Pirates’ catcher Jerry May called for a change-up, but Dock Ellis waved him off and threw a slider. As the pitch hurled toward the plate, there was a blinding flash of light and the ball found herself in a dark woodlands. Ball wandered the forest for what seemed for days. Scared and lost she eventually came to an opening in the trees. In the middle of the glade was a shimmering golden sword bathed in a ray of sunlight; a distant yet distinct singing filled the air. She felt oddly comforted as she approached the sword, and when she grabbed the hilt; the song stopped. “ You’re the Chosen One” a voice behind her gasped and Ball tightened her grip on the sword as she turned around to confront the voice. Hovering in the air before her were a pair of fairies, their butterfly wings fluttering in the air. “Only the Chosen One can wield the Golden Sword” one of the fairies exclaimed. “You have come to free our land from the tyrant King Horatio J. HooDoo” said the other. The two fairies brought Ball to their leader, the exiled Princess Reason. “ Stranger, you must help us” Princess Reason pleaded, “The evil Horatio J. HooDoo has usurped my family’s throne and kidnapped the Princess Rhyme. Strike down the dark tyrant with the Golden Sword. Free my land and my love”. Ball traveled to the Black Castle and fought her way to the throne room. Sitting before her was the loathsome King Horatio J. HooDoo on his throne of skulls. Beside him, in chains, was the beautiful Princess Rhyme. “Your Golden Sword doesn’t scare me, ‘Chosen One’” sneered the tyrant as he grabbed the Eternally Dark Mace of Eternal Darkness and attacked. Ball deftly dodged the blow and plunged the Golden Sword into King Horatio J. HooDoo’s heart. “NOOOOOO!” the false king screamed as, dying, he became engulfed in flames. The shackles binding Princess Rhyme came loose, and the exiled Princess Reason rushed into the throne room; embracing her love for the first time in what seemed liked an eternity. Princess Rhyme and Princess Reason were soon married and the now Queens ruled peacefully as Fairy Land entered a golden age of prosperity. Ball was ever at their side; ready to defend the land and its people with her Golden Sword. After hundreds of years of peace, Ball was on patrol in the forest when, hearing an oddly familiar faint singing, she came upon an opening in the trees. Entering the glade she landed in Jerry May’s mitt for a called strike three; ending the Fourth Inning.
Inning 5: There were two strike outs, a walk and, one of the Padres’ batters grounded out to first. Why do you want to know? What are you a cop?
Inning 6: Dock Ellis was into a groove until, out of nowhere, a San Diego Stadium vendor’s hot dog turned into a troll doll and starting screaming at a young woman in the stands
Inning 7: The Spiders are back, but this time they’ve brought along Ravi Shankar to perform “Take Me Out To The Ballgame”
Inning 8: Ellis was getting erratic and starting to show signs of fatigue,. Pirates manager Danny Murtaugh went out to the mound to talk to his starter. Before melting into the nameless void the coach simply said: “Raphèl mai amècche zabì almi”. Scholars and baseball historians have argued the meaning the manager’s words to this day, but, settling down, Dock Ellis understood them perfectly.
Inning 9: Ellis dispatched the first two batters and was now face-to-face with his mortal enemy: The Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat. Stepping up to the plate, The Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat grabbed his bat and defiantly pointed at the left field wall, Dock Ellis threw his first pitch and The Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat connected. The ball sailed towards the left field wall, but at the last second the ball drifted foul. Dock Ellis next pitch was a fastball right down the middle that the Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat scoffed at; not even bothering to swing at strike two. A visibly shaken Ellis threw the next pitch too low sending his catcher scrambling to trap it. The Fire-breathing Space Dolphin glared at Dock Ellis staring straight in the soul of the Pirate’s pitcher, silently daring him to throw the next pitch . But Dock Ellis would not be intimidated, and threw the fastest, meanest, curveball of his life. The Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat swung with all of his power, but the ball sailed straight in to catcher’s mitt. The mighty Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat had struck out. Dock Ellis stood triumphantly on the mound as the Fire-breathing Space Dolphin adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat walked silent toward to the pitcher. He took off his Technicolor Dream Coat and draped it over the shoulder of Ellis. Exhaling a puff of smoke, the Fire-breathing Space Dolphin no longer adorned in a Technicolor Dream Coat held back tears as he walked dejectedly into the Padres’ dugout
A few hours later Dock Ellis came down from his trip, and, after taking off a dusty old monochromatic smoking jacket, realized he had thrown a no-hitter. It was one of the sloppiest no-hitters in baseball history. Ellis walked eight batters, hit one with a pitch, and threw many wild pitches either high or in the dirt in the 2-0 Pirates victory . Dock Ellis later said he regretted taking the acid, claiming it robbed him of the memory of his greatest accomplishment.