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Good night, sweet prince: a Shakespearean tribute to Josh Willingham

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Josh Willingham is retiring. Jesse hijacks a little bit of Hamlet to say goodbye.

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

WILLINGHAM

Please, give me that baseball bat, if you love me. Let go of it! I'll get it from you, Billy Butler, I swear. Oh God, Horatio, what a damaged back I'm leaving, it's so bad that no one knows the truth. If you ever loved me, then please postpone the sweet relief of death awhile, and stay in this dugout long enough to tell my story.

HORATIO

You're retiring, Josh. Not dying.

Shouts are heard from offstage, and someone yells 'BOOM, BOOM'

WILLINGHAM

What the heck is that?

NED YOST enters

NED YOST

Young Dayton Moore, still drunk after the World Series parade, pretending he has cannons.

WILLINGHAM

Oh, I'm dying, Horatio!

HORATIO

You're retiring.

WILLINGHAM

Oh, I'm retiring, Horatio! My knees are that of a 96-year old, and they are overpowering my ability to move. I will not keep my locker long enough to hear if my agent has received an offer to re-sign. But I bet Mr. Moore will find plenty of other ways to befuddle and enrage his team's fan base. He's got my vote as I die.

HORATIO

Retire?

WILLINGHAM

He's got my vote as I retire. So tell him that, given the recent events here - oh, the rest is silence. Oh.

Takes a step away from locker, backing towards door

Oh.

Another step backward

Oh.

Another step backward

Oh.

Another step backward, into hall, then slides stage right, out of sight

HORATIO

Now a noble heart is retiring. Good night, sweet prince. May Outfield's "Your Love" serenade you out of the bowels of Kauffman Stadium, since your decision to change to Building 429's "Glory Defined" this season was an awful, awful choice. (pause) What the heck is that noise?

DAYTON MOORE enters, wearing lamp shade and carrying a cymbal, cow bell, and dragging a bass drum on his right foot

DAYTON MOORE

BOOM! BOOM! (Falls over)

/Scene