PORT ST. LUCIE, FL – The rose pedals are still on the satin sheets. The half-eaten box of chocolates lies open on the coffee table. Two empty bottles of red wine are on the nightstand. We all know what day it is… it’s Spring Training Saturday! Whoooeeee! But wait. There is an uncharacteristic gloom, a pall if you will, hovering over our beloved Cactus & Grapefruit Leagues… and thus today’s headline topics: Spring Training Angst?! POTUS Bellinger, Apologetic Mets
SPRING TRAINING ANGST
What the flocking bunk tile?! Not since the aftermath of Sosa, McGwire and Bonds have we had such gloom to contend with at Spring Training. Prior to that, it was Gooden or Strawberry in rehab. Or Dykstra and McDowell traded for Juan Samuel. And yes, I know you can claim losing a stud to injury (Matt Harvey, Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, David Wright, Yoenis Cespedes) is gloom-inducing, but that’s part of the game. This other bunk is not. This is supposed to be the time of year where we can actually enjoy baseball, not curse managerial decisions, egregious base-running blunders or confounding blown calls. Heck, even the players are friendly and somewhat accessible in Florida and Arizona. Yet, here we are with the Ghosts of Cheaters Past lingering. It’s a goddamn mess and Manfred Man has been blinded by the light (or Houston lasers) and pooped the bed with all of us in it. Oy. Vey. If only there was someone to say what we are all feeling…
When you are really, really good at something, you can likely say what you want without repercussion, as long as it doesn’t cross certain lines. Cody Bellinger, a 2nd generation Major League ballplayer with baseball DNA coursing through his veins, is one of these people. And he is not sugar-coating his words, nor is he backing off from taking on Czar Manfred, Astros owners by name and a fellow MVP winner, Jose Altuve. POTUS Cody says Altuve would have come up short next to Aaron Judge in the 2017 MVP race had it not been for sign-stealing. Yours truly thinks that’s hooey, but still loves the fact that this guy is blasting everyone:
“I thought the apologies were whatever. I thought (Astros owner) Jim Crane’s was weak. I thought Manfred’s punishment was weak. Those guys were cheating for three years… I think what people don’t realize is (Jose) Altuve stole an MVP from Judge in ’17. Everyone knows they stole the ring from us. But it’s over.” –Next President Bellinger
Run for our highest office (Bill Lee reference lost on younger audience), C-Bell. We’ll ring in for you!
Current Mets Jake Marisnick and J.D. Davis, two young players who were fighting for their baseball lives in 2017 with Houston, are apologizing for not saying anything re their Astros teammates cheating that year. Wait, what? Sure, their mea culpas are cool and reporters are obligated to ask these guys about it but it’s absolutely ridiculous to have expected them to be the ones to stand up and blow the lid off their organization’s malfeasance. And where was Carlos Beltran when it came to apologizing or standing up for the game’s sake? I’ll tell you where he was – front and center in the slime [allegedly], sucking the aforementioned young duo down with him. He’s a douche [allegedly].
And there you have it. Happy Spring Training Saturday! Come back tomorrow for everyone’s [Bobby] Valentine, Cheesy Bruin.