A Day at the Ballpark (plus, the Jimmy Key tribute)
So I'm at the Jays game today for my buddy Jeff's birthday, and the Jays load the bases in the first inning with Brad "Why am I on a major league roster?" Wilkerson at the plate. Jeff thinks he's due for a grand slam. I start to loudly deride Wilkerson's baseball abilities and maybe even his worth as a human being, capping my rant off with "If Wilkerson hits a grand slam, I'll buy us all a beer."
Do I even need to say what happened next?
So Wilkerson hits his slam, Jeff starts cackling and since he's a fan of irony, he releases me from my beer debt on the promise that I "write a blog note about it." Done and done. Better that than take out a mortgage to afford five Rogers Centre beers. I'm just glad I stuck to something as generic as beer for my anti-Wilkerson taunt. I could've just as easily said if Wilkerson hits a slam, I go streaking, and thus I would've sunburned more than just my forearms at the game.
Also notable this afternoon was our group's abuse of poor Billy Butler. The Royals' first baseman has what can only be described as an ample posterior. Let's just say that if Sir Mix-A-Lot was gay, Butler would probably have had an album dedicated to him by this point. Since we were sitting down in the lower bowl, it is almost an obligation to pick on one opposing player and taunt the hell out of him, and on this day it was Butler. It was just a magical combination of his fat ass and his useless performance in the game. My friend Will got things started with a Daaaaarrrrryl-esque chant of Butler's last name, but then switched to an arguably more insulting "BUTT.....ler!" The nine-year-old kids sitting in front of us thought this was hilarious and joined in. It was truly a proud moment.
Onto the really notable part of the evening, as this may end up being a help to men everywhere. Fellas, you know when you're out with your pals and you see a good-looking woman, and you want to alert them to her presence? Now, you don't want to just be a jackass and do a wolf-whistle or something, so you have to be more subtle. At the game today, I heard the guys keep yelling out the name of former Jays pitcher Jimmy Key, and at first I thought they were indulging in some sort of Bill Brasky homage, but no, turns out that 'Jimmy Key' was their code word for a hot woman in the area. What a great idea. When you acknowledge a beautiful woman, you're not hitting on her or being crude or anything like that. You're merely tipping your cap, so to speak --- and what Jay is more famous for tipping his cap than Jimmy Key, on his way off the mound in Game Four of the 1992 World Series? Frankly, if I'm Jimmy Key, this is the greatest honour one could have bestowed upon him in a major league career. It just occurred to me that this isn't really even gender-specific, so ladies, if you see a fine-looking man walking down the street, feel free to call him a Key amongst yourselves.
In a related story, it was decided that if you were to see a woman who was just atrociously ugly, the proper phrase to use is "Josh Towers."
In my previous post I mentioned the 'neutralize stats' option at Baseball-Reference.com, and my pal Ryan had the hilarious idea of using it on Ty Cobb to see what he would've hit had he not been a horrific racist. Let's take it a step further....how would Three-Finger Brown had pitched with a regular hand? Or if Jim Abbott had two hands? Or if Pete Gray had two arms? (That's right, a one-armed ballplayer once played in the majors...it was during WWII, what can I say). Or if Eddie Gaedel was six feet tall? I think if you neutralized Gaedel's stats, you'd find he'd be the greatest ballplayer of all time. After all, he had a perfect 1.000 OBP. Billy Beane would've busted a nut if he had drafted Gaedel.
Test the Nation! CBC! Sunday night! 8 PM! Me! Back row! Armchair Athletes team! Montreal Expos jersey! WATCH IT!