Recently Mani and I did something we don’t normally do. We got into a fight.
It wasn’t fist-driven; we are thousands of miles away, as we usually are. Instead this beef was sparked by an idea, as most beefs are, and when strong personalities have conflicting ideas chaos can result.
It all started as most baseball-inspired beef these days does: with Bryce Harper and Mike Trout. I, personally, tend to lean towards Harper in the whole who-will-have-a-better-career-overall-comparison. I also personally tend to like his style, his flash, his swing, and his attitude. I like to see him piss on the baseball and I like to see him run. People have seemed to forget all the things he does well lately as his batting average slips closer and closer to Jeff Francour’s.
But the fight wasn’t even about Harper. It sprouted out of everyone who knows me’s assumption that any Mike Trout bashing I do stems from the fact that he is the rookie being heralded like I think the other should. Like I’m jealous, for Bryce Harper, which is ludicrous. So I said I didn’t think Mike Trout should be the AL MVP. So, what?
I was born in New York City in 1992 and have for the most part lived here all my life.
Growing up in the Big Apple, people tend to tell you not to leave, and so your knowledge of other cities is molded mainly by stereotypes told through accent-laced, overpriced hotdog-chewing teeth. For example: L.A.’s beautiful lethargy, where the sun is always setting and Snoop is on every corner offering you a J; Boston’s awfulness, in every aspect of life; Philly’s cheesesteaks.
It makes for a pretty limited world view. As for Pittsburgh, PA – just a stone’s throw from Gotham in the grand scheme of things – here are the only things I know with confidence after twenty years:
- Residents eat, live and breathe steel. Or they used to, or something.
- Somewhere between there and Williamsport you’ll find the Amish, who charge $80 for horse-carriage-tours through their field-villages, and have no problem taking your money but still resent you for watching them from your car like tourists through a safari jeep on the savannah.
- It is where the scariest man on the planet does these jaw-dropping, make-you-feel-emasculated workouts
- Wiz Kalifa is solely responsible for keeping the place’s tattoo parlor industry afloat
- And lastly, it’s the one place on Earth – even more so than Kansas City – where year after year you can guarantee nothing if not that the baseball team will really, really suck.
We live in an age of flow.
Today, in the over-individualistic, judgment-fleeing 21st Century, people are finding it easier than ever before to express themselves in whatever way they want, often by making themselves look however way they want. There is no embarressment or shame in having a hefty beard; instead T-Shirts get made. Dreadlocks? You’re team will sell wigs at the stadium. Just look at Bryce Harper. When he broke into the bigs, his butchered faux-hawk was almost as big of a story as his play. It’s a testament to the intense scrutiny players are under today and their ascending status as not only athletes, but as celebrities and objects of desire in our societal hierarchy.
So what have we been missing under the helmets and caps? Get ready for the best hair in baseball.
Sunday MLB will announce the 2012 All-Star teams. They will announce every player: starter, reserve and wuss who will back out faking an injury alike. With players getting hurt, pitchers pitching too soon before the game, and the Final Vote, the smart money is on the actual rosters eventually looking a lot different than the ones that will be announced tomorrow.
Mike Napoli was leading the fan vote at catcher at last check. He’s hitting .237. Napoli’s unfair selection will take the roster spot of someone who’s had a much better first half. There will be other snubs too, you can guarantee that. Here’s whose names should be called out tomorrow.
Dear Mr. Cano and Mr. Kemp,
We know this is stupid. We get it.