Sports needed Oakland’s Dallas Braden in the worst way. In fact, if he hadn’t stumbled along on his own, we might have had to make him up. But while Hollywood would have cast Kevin Costner as his manager and Betty White as his feisty grandmother, I’m not sure even screenwriters could have come up with the right details: his up-from-nowhere career, his setting up his climactic scene by popping off at the game’s premier prima donna a few weeks ago, his mom’s dying from skin cancer when he was in high school, his perfect game coming on Mother’s Day.Why did "sports need Dallas Braden in the worst way"'? So the A-Rod-hating writers have another excuse to berate Rodriguez, the "game’s premier prima donna"? Please.
It's also odd to hear a New York Times reporter say that if Braden hadn't existed, "we might have had to make him up." Didn't the Times get into a whole heap of trouble with Jayson Blair doing just that?
Also, hearing a journalist, let alone a New York Times writer, complain about "prima donna" behavior is amusing in and of itself. You want to see prima donnas in action? Just make the mistake of sitting in the wrong seat in the press box!
Then again, I guess I can understand Zinser jonesing for an A-Rod scandal fix. Because no other ballplayer sells papers - or gets page views - the way A-Rod does. And that goes even for the highfaluting New York Times. But until the Braden thing, Rodriguez hadn't really done anything controversial this season to give the press something to write about. (Yes, there's the Anthony Galea story, but if you bring that up, it also taints Mets stars like Carlos Beltran and Jose Reyes. And you know the media doesn't really want to go there!)
Also, thanks to Rodriguez being was the biggest reason the Yankees won the World Series last year, the media can no longer do their "A-Rod is not teh clutch" meme they were so fond of. They can't say he's mentally weak anymore, so forget all their armchair psychoanalyzing. And they can no longer rely on Joe Torre to feed them negative stories on No. 13. Plus, now that Rodriguez is single, his social life is no longer scandalous.
Anyhow, the next time you read a sportswriter proclaim that the media just reports the facts without any bias, remember what that New York Times writer said about how "sports needed Dallas Braden in the worst way" - to give them something to bash Alex Rodriguez with!
What do you think? Tell us about it!