· Joe Sez, News · , , ,


You know that part in Bull Durham when Nuke LaLoosh is pitchin’ naked, and then Crash wakes him up and they talk about it like it’s a common baseball player dream? I always thought that was just a big Hollywood cow pie designed to make baseball players interesting to movie critics. Nope. In fact, Arrieta is livin’ his own Nuke LaLoosh dream in ESPN the Magazine’s “Body Issue” (coming out July 6th).

Now I don’t have anything against nudity. The missus will definitely confirm that aside from the Cubs using the Cards for a roll of Charmin, I’m at my jolliest when she’s all dressed up in her birthday suit and there’s nothin’ good on TV. And I’ve let more than my share of guys cut in front of me at the barber shop cuz I was busy checkin’ out the naughty bits of the Playmate of the Month. But I gotta draw the line at Jake Arrieta, my friend.

First of all — and this point is so major it counts for 3 points all by itself — Arrieta is a guy. I don’t really give a crap that he has some super human healthy lifestyle and is built like the Rock. Nobody wants to see the J-man’s bat swingin’ in the wind. Maybe Mrs Arrieta. Maybe some of the bimbettes I see swooning at Wrigley when 49 is pitchin’. Maybe the guys over in Boystown. But that’s it. If I wanna see a guy naked, I can look in the mirror. In fact, it’s because of the naked guy starin’ at me in the mirror in morning that I don’t wanna see Arrieta, or Dwyane Wade, or all 300+ pounds of Vince Wilfork pretending their in a Michelangelo fresco. No offense to athletes and their athletic bodies, but as long as the Internet is still plugged in, there’s greener grass. Know what I’m sayin’?

Now I’m sure there’s some sorta Freudian head-shrinker mumbo-jumbo that can explain why one of the best pitchers in baseball felt compelled to pitch naked in the desert for ESPN. But if I’m pullin’ down Arrieta’s pay check, I don’t really need the money. So what is it? I know there are parts of San Francisco where you can just walk around in broad friggin’ daylight without a stitch and it’s ok. Maybe Arrieta is one of those kinda guys. I don’t know. Pitchers are a different breed. Mark Fidrych used to garden on the mound. Carlos Zambrano had to be hauled off the field in a straight jacket with monotonous regularity. And Al Hrabosky? Well, let’s just say big Al wasn’t called “the mad Hungarian” for nothing.

And where’s the front office? You tellin’ me Theo is good with this? Where’s Major League Baseball? Usually orgs like those are screwed down so tight you can’t slouch in your chair without gettin’ fined. Posin’ nude? That’d usually get your naked ass fired. I guess this is a non-factor, though, cuz this particular issue of ESPN the Magazine, along with the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue (girls, though … really hot ones) are generally accepted … and mostly tasteful. That and the itty bitty fact that Arrieta is pitchin’ like some sorta Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson, 50mm Howitzer mishmash this season. In my opinion, though, if God had wanted ballplayers to pose nude he wouldn’t have invented pinstripes.

Of course, I could be wrong. But I’m not.


NLDS 2008, GAME 1

· 2008 Cubs, Joe Sez, The Playoffs · , ,


Let me start this by saying that probably the best movie ever made (that you don’t have to be in a hotel room to watch) is Bull Durham. Just so you know.

So yesterday I walk out of Wrigley and, across from Murphy’s, there’s this guy with a Jesus sign going on and on about how Jesus saves, and this and that. So I’m thinking, well we got Kerry Wood, pal. (Not that he got a chance to save jack in game 1.) Anyway he’s looking right at me, so I say, “Oh, yeah, where?” So he says “In heaven, son, in heaven. You just gotta belieeeeeeve.” You know, like one of those white suit-wearing TV evangelist dudes, all in a rapture, waving his arms and throwing his head back like he’s Tim Lincecum.

Right about then I realize it was a big mistake making eye contact with this whacko, cuz he points right at me and says, “Do ya belieeeeeve, son, do ya belieeeeeeeeeeeeeve?!” even more agitated than the first time. So I just go off on him. “I believe in the brat. The day game. The temperature of Zambrano’s heater. I believe the only juice players should be on is orange, apple or kiwi grape. I believe the Yankees don’t have a monopoly on pinstripes, great fans, or championship rings. I believe beer in a plastic cup is better than beer in a glass. I believe chin music oughta be played more often; that anyone not running out a weak grounder should be sent down; and that instant replay belongs on a grid iron, not a diamond. I believe that the DH is an abomination second only to the Astros uniforms of the 70’s. I believe there’s nothing in the art world (except for those Picasso women with 3 or 4 boobs) quite so beautiful as a well-executed hook slide, or a right fielder laying the guns of Navarone on some pinhead trying to score from second.” I can see he’s a little surprised that someone is giving him his own medicine, but I continue. “I believe that the yay-hoos who think there’ll be lap dances in the Sistine Chapel before the Cubs win the World Series happen to be the same yay-hoos that like to parade around the house in their wive’s underwear, have iPods with multiple Boy George playlists, and stand on corners with cardboard signs about God, WHEN I JUST HAD 9 INNINGS OF PROOF THAT THERE ISN’T ONE!!!!” He’s definitely frightened now. “And, my friend, I believe when you serve up 8 walks, 2 to the friggin’ pitcher, 3 dingers and 1 error to anybody, you just ain’t gonna win!!!”

I love Bull Durham. I hate the Dodgers.


PS. I also believe in that three-day-long, slow, deep wet kisses thing, but I left it out because I didn’t want him to think I was a Dodgers fan.