And it didn't end in near fisticuffs with the manager. (I'd take Chris Hoiles in that dream scenario, by the way).
But make no mistake, while Hillenbrand's exit from York lacked the sex appeal or media circus found when he was cast aside by the Toronto Blue Jays two years ago, the two-time Major League All-Star's time in York was vintage Shea.
In other words, his brief stay with the York Revolution was focused on what Hillenbrand has been infatuated with his entire career -- himself.
OK, technically I'm a bit premature here. Hillenbrand is still on York's roster -- he's on the inactive list to be politically correct. And if you ask the question, the Revs' brass will say they're hopeful Hillenbrand may return from an injured hamstring later this season.
But I'm passing on that helping of low-grade baloney. And so should you.
The fact of the matter is, if Hillenbrand had any intentions of staying with the Revs, he wouldn't have left in the first place. Last time I checked York has a team trainer and an adequate medical staff to treat injuries. So why the need for the jaunt across the country?
And what's worse is Hillenbrand left town leaving his closest teammates -- and more importantly the manager and director of baseball operations -- uncertain of his return. In essence, he's held the Revolution hostage the last two weeks. Meanwhile, the Revs have been forced to wait out these shenanigans while they fight for a spot in the playoffs.
Of course, Hillenbrand's teammates continue to stick by him. They point out that he helped numerous players in the batting cage during his six-week cameo with the Revs. And really, what else can they say?
But while Hillenbrand offered his hitting expertise and gave York one of the purest swings the Atlantic League has ever seen, he'll also be remembered for other things.
The way he dogged it on numerous groundouts. The time he barked at a fan who dared to boo him for his lack of hustle. And the occasion he left the Revs' dugout with his gear in tow while York was trying to mount a rally in the late innings.
So here's the bottom line for York -- end this charade already. Cut Hillenbrand and squash this deranged marriage.
No player is bigger than the team.
It's time Hillenbrand learned that.
-- Jeffrey A. Johnson covers the Revolution for the York Dispatch. He can be reached at email@example.com or at 505-5406. Read his blog, "Revolution Rumblings," at revolutionrumblings.wordpress.com.