BRONX, NY – The following is taken from the upcoming book by our man Aristotle “Mugsy” Sakellaridis, re stories about his pal Hank Steinbrenner of the NY Yankees.
On this one particular day during Spring Training in 2014, me [Aristotle Sakellaris] and Ray [Negron] were in Hank’s office just hanging out. Hank was behind the desk as Max stood on guard just in case assassins burst into the office. Hank was checking me out real hard when he suddenly blurted out, “Hey, you think you’re in good shape?” I thought, ‘here we go again with his latest challenge.’ I responded, “No, I’m not in good shape, I’m in great shape.” He then looked at Max and then looked at Ray, who had a mischievous smile on his face. Hank barked out, “How many pushups can you do?” I responded, “A standard pushup?” He answered yes. I continued, “One set?” He said, “One set.” “I’ll give you sixty!,” was my answer.
He looked at Max and at the same time said, “Get the hell out of here, I’ll bet you twenty dollars you can’t do sixty.” Max responded, “I’ll also bet twenty dollars that you can’t.” Here we go again, the famous twenty-dollar bet. If I was to cash in on all the twenty dollar bets I’d won from Hank and his haters, I could probably buy a $2500 Legend’s seat to watch his team play up in the Bronx.
I made some space as Ray was leaning toward Hank’s bet. I started doing pushups while they were all counting. I got past forty, when Hank thought I shot my load. I’m now at fifty, and Ray switched sides. When I got to fifty-seven, I shouted, “How many is that?” They both responded fifty-seven. Number fifty-eight was done and again I shouted, “How many?” Fifty-eight came the response. Fifty-nine was a cinch, when I suddenly ended the quest and stood up. All three of my haters were in shock. Hank shouted, “What the hell happened, you had it.” I looked at him, smiled and said, “You said I couldn’t do sixty, ‘The Boss’ is always right.” They stood there all looking stunningly confused. I let out a loud laugh and shouted, “F*ck all of yous!”
A few days later I was down in the tunnel that leads to the player’s parking lot. Yankees back-up catcher Francisco Cervelli walked toward me, while he was headed to his car. I decided to have some fun with this Major Leaguer, who was just coming off a steroid suspension. I blurted out, “Yo, Hank wants to see you in his office right now.” He responded, “Who me?,” his green eyes growing wide. “No we!,” I answered back to him. We both walked toward the elevator to take us to the fourth floor and Cervelli looked like he was about to have a seizure. He nervously asked, “Hey man, what is this about?” I answered,” I don’t fucking know, he just told me to go get you.” Poor Cervelli was looking upward at the elevator numbers with a nervous look about him. I felt like a prison guard escorting a death row inmate to “The Chair.”
We made it to the “Warden’s” office and Hank looked up from the desk, “What’s up?,” he asked. I tell Hank, “Hey this guy says he can give you sixty pushups right now!” Hank looked at me as if I were crazy. Cervelli was confused. He quickly responded, “Sixty! No, not me.” Hank asked him, “How many can you do?” Cervelli, looking as though he was being interrogated with a verbal steroids test, nervously answered, “Maybe twenty-five.” I asked him how old he was, he said twenty-seven. I then looked at Hank and said, “Twenty-seven years old, and a Major Leaguer on top of that. Compare that to a fifty-three-year-old bum b*tch,” referring to myself. Hank then tells Cervelli “This bum b*tch did sixty yesterday,” and I responded, “Fifty-nine!” Cervelli was impressed, and at the same time was trying to figure out why he was in Hank’s office. I looked at him and said, “You can go now.” Hank smiled and told Cervelli, “I can’t believe you let this bum bitch play you like that.” Cervelli laughed and made his exit. I glanced at Hank and told him, “That guy can’t fuck with us!” Hank responded, “Gimme sixty!”
There’s more where that came from. In the meantime, feel free to comment below and come back tomorrow for Buddy Diaz.