1934. Moe Berg is a seldom-used backup catcher on the Washington Senators team, and he is not in prime condition when he is suddenly inserted into the lineup to catch on a hot, humid day in Philadelphia.
In the seventh inning, Earl Whitehill, the Washington pitcher, and Doc Cramer, outfielder for the Athletics, start doing that always-irritating cat-and-mouse game. Cramer gets in the box, then backs out; Whitehill takes the rubber, then steps off.
And behind the plate, Berg is bobbing up and down, getting in his crouch when it looks like the game will resume, standing up when the pitcher or hitter stalls again. And he's getting progressively angrier with both.
Suddenly he calls time. Umpire Bill McGowan asks why. Berg's response: He takes off his mask, his chest protector, his shin guards, piles them all on home plate and tells McGowan: "Ill be back when these two guys decide to play baseball. Right now, I'm going to go take a shower."