Unless you’re still weeping over the fact that Game of Thrones is done for the season, you know that Kris Bryant leapt a few tall buildings in a single bound last night on the way to becoming the first player in Chicago Cubs history to have 16 total bases in a single game. Those came at the expense of the Cincinnati Reds in the form of 3 yard shots and 2 doubles. In fact, no one in the 177 years we’ve been playin’ the sport of baseball has ever had that particular combination of five hits in a game. Not even once. Seems to me parents oughta be marchin’ their kids by a plaque somewhere that commemorates this feat of basballian heroism.
The last time I saw the kinda power Bryant put on display last night was when the Soviets paraded their military might through through the streets of Moscow. I’d suggest marching Bryant through the streets of whatever city we happen to be in, but he’s not that kinda guy. And that’s the part I like best about Kris. You won’t see him flippin’ his bat, or standin’ at home admiring one of his dingers, or showin’ up another team. He just goes about his business and lets the performance do the talkin’. Bryce Harper, put your comb down for a minute and pay attention.
What makes this even filthier than it already is, is the fact that he did it while playin’ 3 different positions. There are certainly exceptions, and the Cubs are filled with players who qualify, but most guys get all twisted when you move ’em around the diamond. It throws their games off. Bryant? He could care less. And why? My theory is that his game is a whole lot more about the team than it is about Kris Bryant. He doesn’t ever get sucked into a mind-funk if he’s goin’ through a rough patch, or he’s battin’ in a different spot in the order, or he’s playin’ right instead of 3rd. There’s no Hollywood in Bryant. Bryce Harper, I said put your comb down and pay attention.
Anyway, you can catch the details from Jesse Rogers or David Schoenfield or ESPN or Jesse Rogers again, or maybe graffitied on a box car somewhere. It’s everywhere. I don’t even think Donald Trump can say something that would derail this story for a few days.
That was some game, Kris. Thanks for the memory.
Hey, if there’s anyone out there willing to drag the Cubs through the mud when they deserve it, it’s me, my friend. Sometimes, fingers need to be pointed (or in the case of the Mets, flipped) and, now and then the Cubs deserve to be on the receiving end. Why? Cuz In my mind, it serves no one’s purpose to “Hillary Clinton” things whenever the Cubs start conducting business on a private server. When they do that, I call ’em on it. But HOLY FRIGGIN’ CRAP! … What the hell is up with you guys wantin’ to string Tommy La Stella up by his Draymond Green target area?! Especially Jesse Rogers, who follows the Cubs for ESPN. I mean, it’s easy for us yay-hoos to mouth off from the cheap seats, but a pro callin’ a kid out cuz he fertilizes the infield grass a couple of times seems a bit harsh.
Maybe I’d feel different if we’d lost. Probably. I’m pretty good at blamin’ a loss on a guy’s brain fart. In fact every time I hear the name, Bartman, I still break into a sweat, and it’s a good 45 minutes until the facial tic goes away. So I get it. La Stella has had better days. But it’s not like anyone is whinin’ about our pen (which does finally have some bulls in it this year, but today, and a fair number of other days this season, they’ve looked more like veil calves). What about their roll in today’s near collapse? My point is, it’s a friggin’ team … and no single guy is gonna win or lose a game all on his own, although that’s what it looks like sometimes. It really doesn’t help La Stella to settle down when he gets skewered in the Twittersphere cuz of one bad day at 3rd.
Besides, anyone who is a true baseball fan — and I don’t give a crap how young you are — knows the name, Brooks Robinson. If you don’t, you’re not a fan. Maybe you’re somewhat interested in the game. Maybe you like pin stripes. Maybe you were dropped on your head as a kid … I don’t know … but you’re not a real baseball fan unless you know the name Brooks Robinson and what it stands for; perfection. Without question, the best third baseman to ever step inside the chalk. Period. (You Phillies fans who are at this moment callin’ me names cuz you think Mike Schmidt was better … go get your shine box.) Brooksy had no equal. Never will. He was called “the human vacuum cleaner” and “Mr Impossible.” And his glove — that golden extension of his left arm — was like a black hole; a singularity with a gravitational pull so strong not even light could escape his grasp. It was a place where doubles down the line met a swift and early death. As a hitter, you stood a better chance of havin’ a threesome with Miss July and August than hittin’ a ball past Robinson.
If there is a God, he played 3rd base for Baltimore.
And you know what? Mr Robinson made 263 errors at the hot corner. I grant you, that was over a 23 year, Hall of Fame career, but that averages out to over 10 a year. In fact he booted 21 in a single season once. Still, he was — if you haven’t yet grasped this — the best. So, before all of you “fans” remove every last shred of flesh from Tommy La Stella’s carcass, consider the possibility that his glove could end up as golden as Robinson’s someday. Go ahead and dish it out when someone deserves it, by all means. I’ll be right there with you. But could you try to not be such Yankees fans? Please?