Hey all – Steve here and it is time for some Hump Day talk.
Before we get started, how good is Billy Joel? I mean come on now. His final concert at Shea Stadium was amazing. He has been down in South Florida on New Years Eve for the last couple of years and I have been unable to go and I kick myself all the time for it. Piano Man? That is one of my favorite songs of all-time and it might just be my favorite. I have actually popped that performance up on the big board on the top of this article just in case you have never seen it. It might not seem like much, but he had 50,000+ people singing along with him. The part where he stops all of the instruments and just lets the crowd sing is absolutely amazing. There is actually a documentary on him that is called Last Play At Shea and it is a must-see for any Billy Joel fan. If you haven’t seen at least some of it and you think you are a Billy Joel fan then you are sadly mistaken.
Now, let’s get on to some sports. I don’t recall ever doing a theme for the Hump Day article, but I will be doing it this week. It will be all about unsportsmanlike conduct throughout sports. This is not a top 10 list or whatever you want to call it, so everything is just randomly placed. Here we go!
Well, I guess I had to start with this one. This was obviously roid rage on the part of Clemens as he chucked the sharp sawed-off end of the bat in Piazza’s direction. You can read his lips afterwards saying he thought it was the ball. Really. Is that really the direction you’re going to take with that one? It was not the first time there was an issue with these two as Clemens hit Piazza right in the helmet with a pitch another time. I feel like it all started when Piazza hit a grand slam off Clemens earlier in 2000 at Yankee Stadium and even going back to 1999 when Piazza hit a tie breaking homerun against Clemens at Shea Stadium. Piazza owned Clemens and Clemens obviously hated it.
Now, here is a dirty scumbag move by someone on the Jets sideline. You can clearly see that Nolan Carroll is tripped running along the sideline. Now, I don’t like either the Jets or the Dolphins, but give me a break here. Also, is this not a huge lapse in intelligence? Does that person not realize that these games are televised and can be seen from many different angles? Did he learn nothing from the Patriots camera people?
Have you heard of the unwritten rules of sports? You don’t just sit there and watch a ball you hit go out. You do not take forever running the bases. It irritates the other team and just rubs them the wrong way. Carlos Gomez has always rubbed people the wrong way, so I have no issues with Brian McCann doing what he did here. I can’t stand him and I am so thankful to this day that the Mets pulled out of that deal for him with the Brewers. Jackass.
This one might be the most violent (or tied with another for most violent on this list). This is completely unacceptable and maybe Bynum was just frustrated with how big of a bust he was becoming (or had become). Think of it – you have a 7 foot 285lb Andrew Bynum stepping up and shoving a forearm to the face of a 6 foot 185lb J.J. Barea. There is no room for that kind of behavior in any sport. I guess that is why Bynum retired at the ripe old age of 28. Good for him.
Now, let me start off by saying that this is a 100% legal play in baseball. If the fielder has the ball you can crush him and boy did Albert Belle crush Fernando Vina. Belle was never accused of being a nice guy in baseball and this just proved everyone’s point back in 1996.
What list of unsportsmanlike conduct would be complete without Mike Tyson? This happened 20 years ago and it still feels like it was yesterday. I remember seeing Holyfield’s reaction and immediately realizing what happened. Have we forgiven him because he was in the Hangover movies? Maybe.
I’m going to stop right there, but I have enough for next week as well. I can’t wait to share some more jackasses with you! If you have any you can thing of that I missed here or would like to see included next week, let me know!