Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Curt Schilling Proves, Again, That Pitchers Are The Biggest Idiots

Throws Right, Thinks Little
In my time as a sports journo, I got to interview a wide number of folks with a wide number of jobs. The athletes in sports that didn't get a lot of coverage, like lacrosse and swimming, really didn't have much of an idea of what to do with a question, and would hem and haw, get quiet, or just recite a cliche or two; it was hard to get them to open up. The players who were in positions where talking was constant -- skill positions in football, basketball players, and the very best interview in sports, the hockey goon -- knew what you were looking for, and would fill up your notebook with speed. They were worth their weight in gold, and you'd go to them as often as you would the coach, honestly.

And bar none, the worst interview subject in the world? The starting pitcher in baseball. There's no rooting in the press box, but I always rooted against the game being decided by these guys, because no matter how good the game was, the post-game talk session with these gifted imbeciles was always the worst. At the high school level, you'd wonder how they got out of middle school. At the college level, how they got in. At the pro level, how they got to the park on a daily basis without chasing fire trucks. (It was, to be fair, a pre-GPS age. And if it was a Rube Waddell homage, props. But it never was.)

But the sub-set, the worst of the worst? The starting pitcher with just enough intellect to know that he was smarter than many other pitchers, especially if he was any good at the job. It was like having a kindergarten class at a boys school all get baseball bats, then give the biggest bully in the second grade a knife; utterly insufferable and impossible to shut the hell up. You'd have a season filled with the petty tyrannies, imposed philosophies, imagined conspiracies and utter self-centeredness of someone with too much power and, well, no consequences or control. And God help you if he didn't win, or a teammate or coach let him down. Being a sports reporter is fun, but it can stop being fun very quickly.

Which leads us to the curious case of Curt Schilling.

Who, let's not put too fine a point on this, was lucky to escape fraud charges in the failure of his game company, and who blew one of the easiest jobs in the world at ESPN, despite repeat warnings to stop using his social media feed like your asshat uncle...

And feels that this qualifies him for a turn in the United States Senate, followed by a run for the Presidency.

No, seriously.

You see, Big Schill's got that Ayn Randian problem -- the one where you are personally offended at the idea that society might need some semblance of selflessness, teamwork, nuance, or the ability to learn from books read after you were a teenager. And he's personally offended by Elizabeth Warren, the progressive senator, bankruptcy expert, decorated law school professor and person who has actually won an election, and feels that he can just defeat her by announcing a willingness to do so. (Oh, and that the Republican Party in Massachusetts would just fall over itself and nominate him, because Bloody Sock, and what the hell, it's not as if Scott Brown is stopping anyone.)

Now, I get that Mr. Trump's rise to prominence makes everyone think a career in politics is just a Twitter account away. And that Schill has probably never met anyone -- well, anyone not involved in his game company failure or ESPN -- who has ever told him to just go pound sand, or that life in the Senate or Oval Office might not be an arena filled with people applauding his every move, and paying to wear a replica of his shirt.

But far be it for me to tell an aging jock what to do, let alone someone with such an urge to inflict his persona on a public that truly hasn't asked for any more Schill in their life.

I will, however, as someone with first-hand experience with the good Professor (served as her secretary in the early '90s at Penn Law!), give the lunkhead one piece of advice...

You might want to see how Trump's attempts to bully her into silence have gone.

As, you know, scouting.

Because when it comes to high heat, as in actual brainpower?

She's got a lot more on the fastball than you, Meat...

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