Friday, September 19, 2014

How Involved in Baseball Is Duffman?

Duffy is a great surname. It's short, it's memorable, it's Irish, and my neighbor once had an awesome golden retriever of the same name. Most of all, Duffy is a great surname because of Duffman references. Which leads us to Wednesday night's Giants-Diamondbacks game. With one out in the top of the ninth, Giants rookie Matt Duffy laced a single to center to score Pablo Sandoval and give the Giants the game-winning run. What made the at-bat even better was this:
Duffy's big hit wasn't the first time that Duffman inserted himself into baseball affairs. Here are a few others that I can think of:

1. September 1997
Duffman first appeared in public, wearing his trademark Duff baseball cap.

It's a classic lid, as iconic as the one worn by the old Brooklyn Dodgers. Duffman's first appearance also coincided with one of Homer Simpson's funniest adventures, his trip to New York.

2. March 2001
After Homer discovered that the owner of Duff beer was planning to move the minor-league Springfield Isotopes to Albuquerque, Homer protested with a hunger strike. Duffman was employed to get rid of Homer but eventually booted his own boss out of the stadium. Duffman rescued the 'Topes from relocation, but only for a couple years.

3. May 2006
Duffman may have been killed in a blimp crash at an Isotopes game. Even if he did die, we know that his spirit lives on. Which leads us to...

4. 2014 MLB Season (Multiple Occasions)
Throughout the season, the aforementioned Matt Duffy and Royals starter Danny Duffy have vied for the honorary title of Duffman.

I think Rany Jazayerli had a lot to do with popularizing this trend, but tons of people have picked it up and run with it. Both Matt and Danny are young and promising players, so baseball fans should be treated to dueling Duffmen for years to come.

The Simpsons is full of great bit characters, and Duffman is up there on the list. His recent prominence in baseball conversations has only furthered his legend.

It's just unfortunate that Matt Groening had yet to invent Duffman by the turn of the twentieth century, when outfielder Hugh Duffy put together a Hall of Fame career. Duffy had a solid nickname, "Sir Hugh," but we've seen recently that nothing tops "Duffman."

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