four(!) years ago today John Rocker was in the news

never did i expect that there would be even the slightest modicum of controversy here on Baseball Blog 2002, but apparently you cant get away with calling John Rocker a racist these days without getting called out, and you know what, that’s fine with me.

i have the most intelligent, insightful readers here on this page and for that im grateful, but bro…

i dont care how drunk the reporter got Rocker, or how many drugs he fed him, or whatever the Rocker apologists are saying that has convinced some that the lefty was hoodwinked by the “big city ‘Sports Illustrated'” reporter back in December of ’99, but unless youre a brain-dead cocky redneck, naive as all hell, you do not, under any circumstance say these sorts of things to any reporter:

“The biggest thing I don’t like about New York are the foreigners. I’m not a very big fan of foreigners. You can walk an entire block in Times Square and not hear anybody speaking English. Asians and Koreans and Vietnamese and Indians and Russians and Spanish people and everything up there. How the hell did they get in this country?”

And you certainly dont call your African-American teammate, Randall Simon, “a fat monkey,” and not expect a few people, including yours truly, to assume that you’re a piece of shit racist.

I don’t care too much about what the mayor of Atlanta, Andrew Young, had to say about Rocker and his family, I don’t take too many things that politicians, even accomplished ones like Young, say in public, because, unlike Rocker, Young’s job is to say the right things.

I care about what guys like Simon had to say.

“I swear to you if he said that to my face I’d tear him up, and one of us would be suspended right now,” Simon responded in 2000.

Here’s something that might surprise you, though– as a proud African-American male, I couldnt give a shit if John Rocker was a racist, homophobe, redneck, 6’4″ bully, who’d been pampered and excused his whole worthless life because he was born left-handed.

If I had a baseball team and he could throw strikes and get people out, I would hire him to play on my team. It is not my job to tell people how to think or act or what to believe in, if I was a GM or a team president, I would say, “yep, I got the racist in the bullpen and I hope he strikes out the stoners that he’ll face.”

I am proud to be an American and live in a country where guys like Rocker can spout their ignorant mouths off and where millions of fans can give it right back to him. I thought it was wrong that Rocker was fined and suspended for his statements. The public wrath was plenty.

No, I dont think he was a victim of the journalist who drove with him through Atlanta as he reeled off a series of slurs that you’d expect from any number of southern-bred frat boys. I also dont think he was a victim of the surroundings where he grew up in. I think he was a victim of having the inability to listen to the best pitching coach in modern history and the victim of having the inability to learn from some of the finest pitchers to ever climb the mound.

Do I care that many – mostly white – fans came to his defense when he came under constant fire for speaking his mind about “queers” and “foreigners”? Not at all. I fail to see where a pitcher who had two decent seasons could inspire someone who was not already a racist, sexist, ignoramous, to aquire those beliefs.

Am I happy that he has struggled mightilly over the last few seasons? Fuck yeah.

Why should I want to see someone so hateful, predictable, and juvenile prosper and become a rich and famous in the very country that was made stronger by its diversity?

Be they Asians or Koreans, Vietnamese or Indians, Russians, Spanish people, or thick-necked goons, this country has become the best place in the world because of (not inspite of) the melding of cultures and differences in thought – but that doesn’t mean that I have to root for assholes.

The nature of competitve professional sports doesnt always reward or breed the gentleman, but there is no reason why we should champion the intentional imbecile.

And despite my learned reader who might think otherwise, the only person who fucked John Rocker was himself.

Which, ironically, was the advice I yelled to the reliever from the stands not too long ago.

a little housekeeping

a lot of people have been very very amazingly cool about putting the coachella ad in their blogad space for free.

i cannot believe how nice so many of you are. thank you. thank you. thank you!

some of you have even offered to sign up for Blogads just to host my little ad for free. that is extremely nice but so unneccessary.

if you really want blogads go for it, but if what you really want to do is just host this ad for a few weeks i have made the JPEG of the ad right there for sweet folks like you who should beware of the sun because you’ll melt.

feel free to hotlink the pic if you want, just make sure that the link from the ad goes to

Q. hey tony how do we link from a picture in a way that doesnt give me that lameass blue border around the image?

A. oh thats so easy you’re going to hate yourself for asking it.

the secret is border=0

so in your img src=”http://… tag, youre going to want to put that border=0 deal in there so it will be img border=0 src=…

Q. hey tony what if we want to put an image in the body of text and have the text wrap around it, like we see you do in your sweet pics on the world famous busblog?

a. oh now thats some fancy shit. but i think i can tell you. in that same image tag either bust with the align=left or align=right depending on how you want the text to wrap. you might also want to slide in a little funkiness that i call the hspace padding i like to add 11 hspaces. so in your average busblog image tag it looks like img align=left hspace=11 src=”…

Q. tony, i have two girlies who want your ass. how do i arrange this?

A. all inquiries go through my social director. Karisa J. Hotshit, 4845 Fountain Ave. #15, Hollywood, CA, 90029

Q. tony balogne, this is serious. I have FOUR lawn tickets to Jimmy Buffett that i need to unload Quick. he’s playing at the Verizon Wireless in Irvine tomorrow. as in TOMORROW. im willing to let them go for $80 total. thats $20 each. no fees. no hassles. no problems. Busblog special. and theyre email tickets. so your readers will have them delivered to their email boxes. how do i let people know how they can get these?

A. Readers, if you want to put on your party hats and boogie down with the Parrotheads in Irvine, email Chad aka Chokey Chicken at chokeychicken @

Q. tony are you going to the Cubs game tonight?

A. i want to but i have to do some secret xbi shit that suddenly came up. SUX!

Q. tony how many nudes from the ladies do you get in your inbox? seriously?

A. not nearly enough. but Spring usually is better than Winter as far as that is concerned. so thanks for asking.

Friends i must run. be excellent to each other, and if you really do put this image on your blog, email me or let me know in the comments and i will link to you at the end of a blog post or in the Specials.

now take on the day

erin from canada + dougie gyro