Angry Ward Wednesday: Mike Schmidt the Pool Guy, Miami Marlins and Musings from South Florida


jupiter hammerheadsWEST PALM BEACH, FL – Summer in the city wasn’t quite hot enough for me and my anger issues so I made an executive decision and forced the family to take a nice long sweltering vacation in the Sunshine State. Ah yes, late-July in Florida, there’s nothing quite like it. There are only a handful of insane tourists (easily identified by their ghastly pallor), people on the beach look like they literally live on the beach, and Best Buy is all out of air-conditioned dog houses. That being said, life goes on and here’s what’s happening.

Everybody in the Pool! This expression never really meant too much to me. I mean, if there’s a pool around, who doesn’t want to be in it? Even the caddies in Caddyshack had their 15 minutes of chlorinated glory. But my daughter has taken this swimming thing to a whole new level. She’s basically waking up, wolfing down breakfast, suiting up, and in her grandparents’ kidney-shaped aqua attraction all before the sun, or anyone else for that matter, is up. And this is just the first session of the day. She’s like a Fresh-Air Fund kid on steroids. It’s taking its toll. Speaking of pools…

From Hot Corner to Pool Cleaner: Mike Schmidt

From Hot Corner to Pool Cleaner: Mike Schmidt

About Schmidt. I was coming back from a nice lunch at Bradley’s Saloon in downtown WPB today when I happened upon a curious sight. It seems a certain Hall-of-Fame third baseman, arguably the best third baseman ever, has gone the Morris Buttermaker route and is making post-career ends meet by cleaning pools. I snapped a quick photo of his vehicle but didn’t get a clear shot of Schmitty himself.

Marlins or Minors? Before I came down here my brother-in-law offered me a choice of two things we could do this coming Saturday night; one was driving an hour and 15 minutes or so to Miami to check out a Cincinnati Reds/Miami Marlins grudge match in that gay disco they call a new stadium and the other was driving 10 minutes or so to see the Marlins minor league affiliate, the Jupiter Hammerheads, take on the Tampa Yankees. It was a simple choice, really: Do I go out of my way to see a team play that even locals don’t go see play while paying major league prices or do I go check out a Single-A game for next-to-nothing that includes a three-hour beer tasting in the price of admission? I am taking a flyer with the latter and will report next week how it turned out.


Free Beer? Marlins/Reds? Hmmm.

Soon enough I’ll be on a collision course with Disney and still trying to figure out how to avoid that one. Going to start by watching some of those movies where a meteor is going to crush Earth and move on from there. Just my luck, the Orlando Predators of the vaunted Arena Football League, don’t have a home game that weekend. No surprise given the fact that if you punch “Orlando Predators” into the old search engine, you get something not at all related to football… unless your name is Sandusky.

Back next week with Round 2 from God’s Waiting Room. Come back tomorrow for Fake Sandy Alderson!

P.s… Here’s a former Fresh-Air Fund kid all grown-up:

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Wednesday: Angry Ward, who has admirers at the NY Times, is the quintessential angry sports fan but one exception… he’s flat-out funny. And the angrier he gets, the more amusing his work becomes. Psychiatrists say, “Angry Ward’s ‘anger’ is a direct result of “Bronx/Mets syndrome: growing up in the Bronx as a Mets fan.” As if that weren’t enough, his Minnesota North Stars abandoned him for Dallas, forcing him to embrace The Wild the way conservatives embrace Mitt Romney. While the Vikings tease him incessantly with flirtations of success, the Golden State Warriors, “Don’t have a enough short, white angry guys but I don’t dislike them… that much.” A-Dubya is MTM’s longest-tenured indentured servant, its Larry David and quite simply, The Franchise.

  • Junoir Blaber

    These minor league teams offer you way more bang for your buck than the major league teams. Why is that?

    • But Jay Bruce is really swinging the bat well.

      • AngryWard

        Jay Bruce is on the bereavement list. You gotta bereave!

  • GrindingAxWalter

    Tried living in South FLA back in 1981 and did not understand why anyone would live there 12 months. blame Red Buttons for luring your families down to that place.

    • “Tired Living” is the state motto.

    • AngryWard

      At least you tried. I like it down here OK but, like you, would have a tough time living here all year. Would seriously miss Autumn and the lead-up to Christmas.

      • AZ2FLA

        try being sentenced down here for practically life…..still trying to find the crime that was committed!!

        • AngryWard

          Your own personal Shawshank Redemption.

          • AZ2FLA

            More like the Green Mile since everything including feet are green down here…

  • de Blasio

    I was at a beer tasting at a gay disco and it was fabulous.

    • It was the best three hours of your life, wasn’t it?

  • SAF

    Ward good luck with avoiding that Disney thing! I was forced to sit through a performance of Newsies on Broadway recently when my 12 year old niece was in town, and I kept wishing that I would wake up in the dentist’s chair during a root canal with the novacaine wearing off.

    • Dr. Christian Szell

      I have booked you an appointment.

      • SAF

        Yes, it’s safe, it’s very safe, it’s so safe you wouldn’t believe it!

        • AngryWard

          It’s not safe. It’s very dangerous.

      • Oh, Doctor! We had to Google you.

  • WAIT! Are you saying you saw Michael Jack Schmdt, the kid with two bad knees that made his dream come true, as a Pool Guy and you didn’t get a picture?! FUMBLE! And lest we forget, the last seconds of this video are arguably Tall Matt’s greatest ever:

    • AngryWard

      An oldie but goodie. I dig the Carlos Delgado announcement. That seems a million years ago.

      • FakeSandyAlderson

        Those Jupiter Hammerheads are like the ’27 Yankees. They’re a Cardinals team so you know they’re good. Their stadium in Jupiter is a beauty and the surrounding streets are full of bars/restaurants/human trafficking etc. fun town Jupiter.

        • AngryWard

          Ha! Been to the stadium, but missed the human trafficking. I thought they were a Marlins affiliate but maybe I’m wrong. I know the Marlins and Cards share the stadium in the spring.

          • FakeSandyAlderson

            Actually, I think you’re right about the Marlins affiliation-yes they do share facilities. Oh well, but Jupiter is still out of this world IMO. Always like the quirky fact that the Marlins are the only MLB team that goes NORTH for spring training.

          • AZ2FLA

            Technically the DBacks go north as well for spring training with their home field being in downtown Phoenix and their spring training in a patch of an Indian reservation surrounded by Scottsdale north of Phoenix….

          • Opinions, not facts, matter here, AZ2FLA!

  • Finns

    Saw a great baseball game on the field behind the Hall of Fame, guys played for the love of the game.

    • And they will be again! August 9th in Cooperstown at 10 AM.

  • buffalobilly84

    If Florida is gods waiting room what does that make Buffalo? God’s Freezer?

    • SAF

      Is that where Ted Williams’ frozen head is?

  • Tall Matt

    Florida for summer vacation. Whaddya do – Alaska in the winter?

    • AngryWard

      Excellent idea.

  • WestCoastCraig

    We had a fresh air fund kid stay up with us one summer way, way back…so far back my only memory is of him, out enjoying the fresh air, cracking his head open when he flew off one of those metal merry go round death traps in the park.

    • AngryWard

      Heh. You don’t see a lot of those metal vomit-go-rounds in public parks anymore. Shame.

    • Fresh air in L.A.? Was the kid from Elizabeth, NJ?

  • Will the Mets be buyers or sellers!?

    • GrindingAxWalter

      Pitchers or catchers?

  • Mista Pedantic

    Summer in Florida ( aka God’s waiting Room) can make you envy the dead.

  • SentFromMyBlackberryWireless
    • AngryWard

      I’ll be sure to check in on him in Port St. Lucie. Watch for his glowing reviews of my visit on twitter.

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