All-Star Game is celebration of schadenfreude

All-Star Game is celebration of schadenfreude
July 15, 2014, 9:00 pm
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Every time a Warriors-Timberwolves rumor story contains the phrase 'The Warriors do not want to give up Klay Thompson,' a puppy wanders into a highway.
Ray Ratto

Adam Wainwright’s “misquote heard ’round the world” made this All-Star Game particularly stupid, and the interview in which his backtrack was essentially extorted was genuinely idiotic. But this is what happens when so many media people are so invested in the mythology of the people they cover. A perfectly reasonable moment – a pitcher saying he grooved a pitch IN AN EXHIBITION GAME to someone he deeply admires and respects – is now the same as vomiting on his gravestone.

So here’s an idea.

If Derek Jeter understood what Wainwright said and had no problem with it (which he did, and which he didn’t, in that order) how about the whining nincompoops who saw match-fixing and humiliation in the game’s first at-bat take a moment to throw themselves down a well? I mean, for the good of baseball, journalism, reason, common sense and genetic engineering.


Speaking of the Jeterfest, a lot of people got all worked up about CBS News tweeting that “Michael Jeter (the actor who died 11 years ago) “takes bow at his final All-Star game.”

Big deal. Jeter played Mr. Noodle in an amateur spring training production of Elmo’s World. Plus, Wikipedia made the proper alteration:

“According to CBS News, Jeter rose from the dead to take a starring role in the 85th MLB All-Star game.”

It’s like Scoop Nisker always said – “If you don’t like the news, go out and make some of your own.”


As it was, the big local story turned out to be Yasiel Puig getting shut out in the Home Run Derby and then taking the hat trick in the game on Tuesday with three strikeouts. The fact that no Giants or A’s made an appreciable contribution Tuesday almost didn’t matter, because the All-Star Game really is a celebration of that most baseball of virtues – schadenfreude.


And now, with Jeter finishing his last All-Star Game (and American League manager John Farrell was a swine for not having Jeter pitch the ninth), maybe we can get a brief moratorium on sportswriters and other media primates using the word “class” to mean anything other than a graduating class. We always define class as “something we like,” and no class as “something we don’t like,” which is not only vague to the point of meaningless but also implies that we are special people with special powers who would know the difference, and worse, that our definition of what is and is not classy is somehow the final word on the matter.

We can think of better and more precise descriptors than that, surely. Like, say, “groovy,” or “bitchin’.”


There should be a time limit allowed on trade discussions, and here’s why: Every time a Warriors-Timberwolves rumor story contains the phrase “The Warriors do not want to give up Klay Thompson,” a puppy wanders into a highway. If you’re saying the same thing every day for a month, you don’t have a story, you have a tape loop.


Brett Favre was asked if his non-existent son would be allowed to play football, which is a weird enough postulate, but his answer makes it a nice bone spur at the base of Roger Goodell’s already painful neck.

Favre said in November that he would be leery of letting a son play football, and repeated that Tuesday, giving two reasons: One, he wouldn’t want his son burdened by his legacy, and two (and this is the clincher for Goodell’s vertebrae), Favre thinks the risks of injury are significant.

“It’s a violent sport, and for two reasons I don’t know if I’d let him play,” Favre told WDAM TV in Hattiesburg. “The pressures to, you know, live up to what your dad had done, but most importantly the damage that is done by playing. I don’t know if I would let him play.”

Looks like that NFL Network gig isn’t happening any time soon.


And finally, Derek Jeter got screwed out of the MVP award. Because that is the meme for the hive mind. All Things Jeter.