Although both the Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals have a rich history, they’ve gone about their business in different ways in recent years.
With a roster chockfull of large personalities, the Dodgers’ celebrations have been known to ruffle their feathers of their opponents and that includes the Cardinals. During the 2013 National League Championship Series, Adam Wainwright and Carlos Beltran expressed their disapproval with some of the Dodgers’ antics, with Wainwright referring to them as “Mickey Mouse.”
This year, the Dodgers have incorporated a bubble machine into their home-run celebrations, which according to Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times, Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said his team would possibly use if they had one:
We don’t have a bubble machine. If we did, we might use it.”
While the bubble machine has led to some controversy, Matheny views its use as a positive:
I think we spend so much time being pretty guarded and everything close to the vest, it’s fun to watch guys show some emotion. And if it’s with bubbles, it’s with bubbles. Whatever it takes to have some fun with this game. I think it’s great for the fans to see that these guys are people, too, instead of just machines that completely block off emotions and fun, especially at this time of year. You’ve got to enjoy it.”
Earlier in the year, the Dodgers were instructed to shut down the machine. The ban lasted one game and the bubble machine returned to its rightful place in the helmet rack. At the time, there wasn’t an explanation or reasoning provided for the Dodgers being told to no longer use bubbles in their celebrations.
However in late-September, Joe Torre MLB Executive President of Baseball Operations, explained he didn’t believe a bubble machine in the dugout was appropriate. Without their being a rule prohibiting the use of a bubble machine, Torre said it was allowed return.
Through the first two games of the NL Division Series, the Dodgers have let the bubbles fly on three occasions with Matt Kemp’s home run in the eighth inning of Game 2 perhaps being the biggest time thus far the bubbles have floated out of the Dodgers’ dugout.