The Inquirer’s been pissing me off recently. There were a few things in this morning’s sports section that warrant reactions ranging from a mild admonition to public flogging. I was originally going to write about Allen Barra’s column claiming that Mike Schmidt was the greatest player of all time until I realized that he had been made to look like a lunatic by a copy editor who wrote the headline without reading the last third of the article. (For anyone who was curious, Schmidt is probably the best third baseman ever, edging out George Brett and Frank Baker. At least until we get a historical perspective on the careers of Chipper Jones and A-Rod. But Babe Ruth is the best player ever full stop. Anyone who wants to argue this with me is more than welcome.)
But on to the real problem: Bob Ford’s column. Thesis: Roy Halladay won’t be bothered by pitching in Citizens Bank Park. Ok. Let’s have a mock Q-and-A between me and Bob Ford.
Me: Interesting proposal, Bob. How did you back that up? Surely you talked to Halladay himself?
Me: His agent? His wife? Someone who knows him well? (Also, while looking up whether or not Roy Halladay is married, I discovered he’s a Mormon. That should answer any longevity concerns–Mormons don’t drink, smoke or even drink caffeine)
Me: Well how about Cito Gaston, or someone he played with on the Jays for a long time, like Vernon Wells?
Bob: No, I talked to two Phillies (Matt Stairs and Scott Eyre) who played with Doc for a combined three years. Eyre hasn’t played with Halladay since 2002 and Stairs since 2007. But while they weren’t exactly knowledgeable, they were easy interviews. I also talked to Chad Durbin and Brad Lidge, neither of whom have ever even met Halladay, as far as I can tell.
Me: Oh. Well. It’s been nice talking to you, Bob. But I’m afraid I’m going to have to stab you through the eye with a leather punch now.