Tuesday, September 27, 2011

On Rooting for the Orioles and the Rays, Disliking John Lackey, and Rookie Hazing

Yes, along with cheering for the Baltimore Orioles to beat the Boston Red Sox last night, I rooted for the Tampa Bay Rays to beat my beloved New York Yankees. And what of it? As Squawker reader Uncle Mike wrote yesterday, "Tibialia Rufus delenda est. The Red Sox must be destroyed." My brother says I should close every column with that phrase!

I want to see Red Sox fans wailing and gnashing their teeth over their team going down the tubes. I had great fun listening to bridge-jumping fans on WEEI last night. And I've been loving reading Boston fans killing Jacoby Ellsbury, only their team's MVP this year, because he dropped the ball and let in an inside-the-park homer last night.

And my Sox fan friends would feel the exact same way if the shoe were on the other foot, as my BoSox fan friend Sully Baseball and I discussed on his podcast last night (click here to listen.)

This Rays/Yankees series means zero to the Bombers, so why not cheer for Tampa to win, since it would help keep the Red Sox out of the playoffs. I don't want to see Boston rise from the dead, the way I feared they would after winning Sunday's game. I want them to go down in history as the worst September collapse ever. This isn't a matter of which team would be better for the Yanks in the postseason; this is a matter of extracting maximum humiliation. And if the Sox make the playoffs at all, the humiliation factor is not there.

Boston could still wake up over the last two games -- after 2004, I NEVER count them out. But here's hoping they continue their September swoon.

One other note on the Sox. Whenever I have pointed out that John Lackey, who I think is a colossal jerk, is actually having a worse season than A.J. Burnett, I've heard back from fans to not be so hard on Lackey, because his wife has breast cancer, and that's part of the reason for his terrible numbers. There's also been some holding back in the press on slamming Lackey due to that issue. And apparently, even the Sox's Bill James asked people to give Lackey a break because of this wife.

Now comes the news, courtesy of TMZ, that Lackey has filed for divorce from his cancer-stricken wife. Then he tried to make himself the victim here, being all outraged with the media Sunday, because some reporter dared to text him over the issue. Good grief.

I've seen a lot of outrage online over TMZ somehow invading Lackey's privacy by reporting a public filing. I wonder where all these Lackey lackeys were when the media ran story after story putting Alex Rodriguez's personal life on the front page, with zero newsworthiness other than it being a way to sell papers. When the press ran stories which were based on unsubstantiated rumors, like the centaur thing, his alleged behavior at strip joints, his tipping habits, and the supposed meltdown over being filmed at the Super Bowl, a meltdown that never actually happened. Not to mention the fact that MLB did a gambling investigation on A-Rod, based on a story from a scandal sheet, even though he could not possibly have been at one of the games in question because he was playing in the World Series.

At any rate, given the intense media attention that the Boston Red Sox's collapse has gotten, how Lackey thought that nobody in the media would write about him divorcing his wife when she has cancer is pretty astonishing. He ought to ask Newt Gingrich and John Edwards about the issue!

* * *

I was wondering when the Yankees were going to do the rookie hazing thing. They did it last night, having the kids dress up as 80s music stars -- Prince, Madonna, George Michael, Milli Vanilli, Slash, and MC Hammer. Aside from the fact that it made me feel old to see some of the big names of my younger days being a nostalgia thing, I noticed a few other things:

* Other than the Madonna costume, and maybe the George Michael one, the "hazing" was nonexistent, particularly in the Slash costume, which actually looked really cool. And the Hammer pants didn't really look like Hammer Time. Plus, most of the players wore sunglasses with their outfits, which helped hide whatever "embarrassment" there was even more. It made the event fun, not a humiliation. I'm sure that's intentional, giving all the issues these days with bullying. Keeping this good-natured was a good thing.

* As a teenager in the 80s, I was completely obsessed with music, and know that decade's music better than any others. So I think there were some really glaring omissions there in this group. Where is Michael Jackson, only the biggest star of the decade? Or Bruce Springsteen? Or Bono? And there are also no alternative rock representatives. Wouldn't it be funny to see a Yankee rookie dressed as Robert Smith of the Cure or as Morrissey? Or the Flock of Seagulls guy?

1 comment:

Steven said...

Lisa - two comments. One, yes, let's kill off Boston. This kind of collapse can set a franchise back many years.

Two, Detroit is the better option for the ALDS. Texas is a much better team top to bottom, as scary as Verlander is.

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