Friday, May 15, 2009

The Best, Worst and In Between of the Week

Other than watching the NBA’s horrible officiating come into the national spotlight during the playoffs, this is the thing that has brought me the most joy over the past week. Thank you Nike for having the you-know-whats to run this:

You go to hell Mike Detillier, you go straight to hell. And take ESPN with you. STOP SETTING OLE MISS UP FOR ONE OF THE MOST EPIC SEASON COLLAPSES OF ALL TIME. In case you haven’t read, Detillier, an NFL draft analyst, has named Ole Miss quarterback Jevan Snead as the #1 prospect in the 2010 draft. His story was picked up by ESPN and is now on the national college football news front.

First, I’m going to ignore the fact that someone is already ranking NFL prospects before the 2009 college football season is over (and yes, I’m aware some “analysts” rank these guys the day after the draft concludes). The point here is not that Snead is the #1 prospect in the draft, it’s that this is yet another story which builds Ole Miss up in a way it cannot possibly live up to (that’s right, I just ended a sentence with a preposition. It’s Friday, dammit.). Because of all these sunshine pumping, bulls eye-on-the-back creating stories about Ole Miss, it’s May and I’m already worried about how we’re going to fall apart in the fall. May I tell you, May!!!

I don’t need this right now. Let me spend my summer not thinking about throwing up every time Ole Miss is mentioned. Our best chance of not blowing what could potentially be our best season since 2003 (or hell, let’s go nuts, 1962-ish) is only going to happen if we can pull a super sneaky under the radar move. The kind that after week eight or nine of the season, people look at the SEC standing and say, “When the hell did Ole Miss get to 8-0? How long have I been asleep? What year is this?” That’s what we need.

Sure, the national publicity is nice, much like stuffing yourself at a Mexican restaurant is nice while it’s happening, but there’s always a hefty price to pay later. And while I love good Mexican food, I understand the risks and know I can’t have it all the time. So Mike Detillier, Kirk Herbstreit, Colin Cowherd and the rest of you, STOP. Erase Ole Miss from your memory for the next three months, then come September-ish you may begin speaking of us again. Please, please, please. Just let me be bored with baseball until September. I need this.

If you’re a Braves fan, you probably associate the name Jim Leyritz with feelings of anger, rage and a permanent dislike of Mark Wholers. Leyritz was the Yankees catcher who homered off Wholers in Game 5 of the 1996 World Series (and the last game played in Fulton County Stadium), which gave the Yankees a 3-2 lead in the series and set them up for their series-clinching win in Game 6.

Wholers, who threw close to 145 mph, decided that Game 5 of the World Series was the best time to experiment with a slider that he couldn’t really throw. Leyritz, a career .264 hitter and with only SEVEN home runs all year, parked that slider, which actually stopped and waited to be hit, over the left field wall. I don’t really remember much that happened after this because I went into a tirade, cursing the day Mark Wholers was ever given the role of closer for the Braves and yelling at Bobby Cox about the pitch and Cox’s decision in the ’91 World Series to have Charlie Leibrandt face Kirby Puckett in Game 6 (when Puckett hit like 8 billion against left handed pitchers), and assumingly blacked out from rage.

I don’t know what Mark Wholers is doing today (hopefully writing apology letters to every single Braves fan), but things for Jim Leyritz are not going well. If you recall that in December 2007, Leyritz was involved in a drunk driving accident in which he ran a red light and killed another driver. He’s still awaiting trial in Florida on DUI manslaughter charges.

Sadly for Leyritz, things got a little worse this week when he checked himself into a psychiatric ward at a Florida hospital on Wednesday night after threatening suicide (Of course the saddest part of the story is the woman who was killed and what her family has to live with, but sports doesn’t care about those outside of sports.). After he spent the night there, his ex-wife told a newspaper that he was released on Thursday afternoon.

Well, I suppose this is the first time I’ve had any other feelings other than hate and disgust towards Jim Leyritz, but don’t get me wrong, I still hate him. I guess we’ll just have to call it the good kind of hate.

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