Bad Backs: Stars Whose Careers Were Cut Short

Adam Graves, Don Mattingly, Larry Bird, NFL, NBA, MLB, Yankees, David Wright, Mets, Meet_The_Matts, Matt-McCarthy, Google Alerts, #GoogleAlerts

NEW YORK, NY – It’s somewhere around 5AM and my ****ing back is out. It’s flocking killing me – pardon my French. Can’t sleep, and the timing – while it could have been worse (things can ALWAYS be worse) – is awful. I need to be on my game today – calling a game on MSG 2 at 3PM ET. This back in the ass back injury, however, opens up the door of creativity in that now we’ve got something to ponder! Funny that, yes?! Anywho, today’s thingy: Bad Backs. Stars Whose Careers Were Cut Short

Donnie Baseball

Don Mattingly had it all going for him. He was one of two of the greatest defensive first basemen to ever hit above their weight – and then some. The other? Glad you asked. That was none other than his cross-town colleague, Keith Hernandez. Look, you only get called Donnie Baseball in NYC for two reasons:
1) We are mocking you.
2) You earned it.

Mattingly earned the latter choice. He was a pro’s pro. The face of the New York Yankees, really, despite a lineup of high-profile superstars. Indeed, his batting title battle with Dave Winfield was epic. Neither one of them bunted for a hit and then took themselves out of the game. You hear me, Jose Reyes? A Gold Glover, a Silver Slugger, a MVP. D-Matts achieved all but two things:
1) A World Series Ring
2) Enough longevity to secure a spot in the Hall of Fame. Ironically, it was the same for Hernandez.

David Wright

The injurious career that Mr. Wright [and tortured Mets fans] endured has been laid out in the pages over and over. This poor slob had a spate of doozies, but ultimately it was that blasted spinal stenosis that had him leave way too early. When he was healthy, he was damn good. Good enough for Cooperstown? We’ll never know.

Adam Graves

You didn’t see this one coming, did you? Some of you won’t even know who he is. Gravy, was an integral part of the only NY Rangers team to win since 1940. He was tough and agile, with soft hands that could bruise a jaw or two if need be. But Graves earned his gravy by getting constantly cross-checked in the crease. His production dropped off and he was not one to linger at a lower level. And he’s been aces off the ice, working within the community. He gets a nod for the Human Being Hall of Fame, but not the one in Chranta.

Larry Bird

Granted, he is a Hall of Famer, but his back kept Boston’s basketball god from putting up even crazier numbers. Remember him laying on the floor near the bench? I do. Imagine if he’d had just a normal, everyday back.

There are, no doubt, others that yours admittedly has missed here. But it’s now 6:30AM and I’ve got to get an hour or two of shut-eye. Your comments below, are welcomed, though, and will show that at the very least…

…you have my back.

Come back tomorrow for Junoir Blaber, but in the meantime, go to Memorial Stadium in Mt Vernon (train to Pelham) and/or watch on MSG2 at 3pm as the New York Ironworkers battle Old Glory, DC in Major League Rugby action.

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About Matt McCarthy 376 Articles
Matt McCarthy, is the MTM founder and consequently wears many hats: Director, Editor, Writer, Web guy and Podcaster... Also known as Short Matt, he's also a two-bit actor, voice-over pro, rugby, baseball and ice hockey player and likes hazelnut coffee with rice milk, while strolling in the sand, listening to foreign films... Matt also moonlights on MTM spin-off,, often wearing a wig and glasses while butchering a Kiwi accent.