OAKLAND -- It's not every day you get to ask a Major League Baseball player for what purpose, exactly, he planned on using a fifty-gallon drum of lubricant.
Let's back up a bit.
New Oakland Athletics left-handed reliever Marc Rzepczynski was only too happy to participate in a prank played on our old friend Brandon Moss after he hit his 100th career home run into the Cleveland Indians bullpen last June, when Rzepczynski was with the Indians:
Apple products, cash, and what was that Rzepczynski wanted? ENHANCE:
A "50 gallon drum of lube." Fascinating.
Moss got his 100th home run ball back after it was sent to Apple CEO Tim Cook so he could use it as a prop at the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco to demonstrate Apple's market penetration. In return, Cook sent the Indians bullpen all the Apple products they requested on their list. The Indians relievers then purchased a dozen iPads to give to the Boys & Girls Club of Cleveland.
But what about the lube?
Rzepczynski insists he did not have anything to do with that specific request, pinning the demand on fellow Indians relievers Scott Atchison and Bryan Shaw.
"You know being left-handed it was kind of turned into a joke," Rzepczynski said, "I was kind of the most outgoing guy in the pen there last year. Being left-handed I think you kind of got to be outgoing."
John Axford, who played with Rzepczynski in Cleveland in 2014, added, "In the bullpen, you're close. You're always together and there's always different characters and there always seems to be the one guy that guys try to get on him. When I was with Zep in '14 for a little bit he was that guy."
Axford went on, "He would take the brunt of the things from guys if they were in a bad mood and wanted to take it out on somebody. Zep would accept and just take it. He would be there to do that and he'd be there to have fun with you guys and joke around about it."
Did Zep get any lube?
Well, not the 50-gallon drum. But Rzepczynski had a plan in case the request was fulfilled.
The list "wasn't even supposed to get put out there!" he explained, "Our PR guy in Cleveland accidentally missed it. He took a picture and it kind of got skewed into what it turned into today."
So Rzepczynski promised revenge. "If I ever get any of the lube sent to me you're getting it poured on you," Rzepczynski told the PR man, "And sure enough I got a gallon sent to me, and I put it on the top of the PR guy's head in Cleveland."
How much does lube cost? I'm asking for a friend.
For your information, depending on the brand and its intended safe use, a 55-gallon drum of lubricant can range in price from $911.32 (free shipping using Amazon Prime) to $8,782.59 (+$3.99 shipping).
They don't sell lube in 50-gallon sizes.