USA out of Tony La Russa

Speaking of life being too precious to be wasted on something as stupid as politics, I noticed with some chagrin today that my Twitter stream of baseball stat-nerdery was chunk-a-blunk with otherwise not-very-political writers I enjoy going ballistic on St. Louis Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa, because he's going to be speaking at the Glenn Beck rally tomorrow at the Lincoln Memorial. I'm no fan of either man's haircut, but, well, Deadspin's Will Leitch puts his finger on it:

For the record, this is not to say La Russa and [Albert] Pujols are not Republicans; I have no idea what their politics are, and part of me wonders if even they know. Pujols and La Russa were on opposite sides of the Arizona immigration law, but I doubt they've ever discussed it with one another or put much thought into it in the first place; the dreary business of discussing politics is for people who don't get to run around and play baseball all day. And, further, contrary to popular opinion, there is not, in fact, anything inherently wrong with being a Republican, or a Democrat. (It's amazing how often this gets lost.) Athletes who speak up on traditionally "liberal" issues are often lauded for Being Brave Enough To Take A Stand, but those who say they vote Republican are chastised for being sellouts. This is one of the few things Michael Jordan was actually correct about: Republicans buy shoes too, obviously. If you think Michael Jordan, or Albert Pujols, or Tony La Russa, or Etan Thomas, legitimately has something valuable to contribute to any debate, you have more faith in their desire to put in diligent research on any topic other than the upcoming road trip than I do. Like most humans, athletes have knee-jerk reactions to political issues that spring almost entirely from their own self-interest. There is nothing wrong with this. If you start requiring everyone who cheers for your favorite team has the same political values as you do, you're missing the whole point of sport. Taking anything an athlete, or celebrity, or anyone other than someone who has put serious study into the issue at hand and is open-minded enough to take a look at every angle and put forth a subtle, complex viewpoint that hopefully leads to a sane resolution (that is to say, "no politicians either") ... it is folly. You are asking more of them than you should.

Whole thing here.

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  • ||

    La Russa absolutely deserves to be chastised . . . for batting the pitcher 8th.

  • ||

    I was at that game last night. The guy in the section next to mine caught Pujols' 400th homer. It was quite the scene.

    I believe he had to give the game ball back, but he got a very nice Nationals jacket and a signed ball out of the deal.

  • ||

    I believe he had to give the game ball back,

    WTF? They can't make you give it back. The jacket and the signature were to convince him to give it back.

  • ||

    Yep. Here's the video.

    http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play......d=11419453

    You can barely see me in the upper right of the screen during the interview with the sunglasses on the grey polo.

  • ||

    Nice that dude made a sweet catch.

  • ||

    Bleacher seats for a man like yourself?

  • ||

    Why?

    Technically speaking it actually is a more effective way to construct a lineup. The effect is minimal of course.

    My reason for disagreeing with it is that I usually want a bigger return when I want to overturn such a big apple cart. The payoff is just not worth trying to shove down everyone's throats.

  • Ragin Cajun||

    I can't help but think that these sportswriters getting the vapors have little to do with La Russa, and are all about the sorority of sportswriter-hood. These writers all want to make sure you know where they stand, and that they have much more proper views than the mongoloids they cover.

  • ||

    I went over to RTFA, and I got a bit of that vibe too, yeah.

  • ||

    I wonder if Matt and / or Mr. Leitch are conversant with the baseball phenomenon "creeping LaRussaism" which was coined by the Boston Globe's and ESPN's Bob Ryan?

    Please discuss.

  • ||

    BTW-

    Larussa is a JD. I don't know if he ever took and passed a bar exam, though.

  • fish||

    Yeah, and noted douchebag Ralph Barbieri (KNBR 680) never misses an opportunity to self pleasure over this fact whenever LaRussa deigns to conduct in interview!

  • ||

    Do tell about MR. Barbieri.

  • Greer||

    Stopped listening to him years ago. A guy who likes his own (nasally raspy, lispy) voice that his questions are usually longer than the answer (by 2-3x).

  • hmm ||

    He was admitted, not sure when, but I know I have heard it mentioned on the radio.

  • The Gobbler||

    People are going to clash and kill at this thing. I watch the Ed show every evening (it's really just on in the background) and he and others are really whipping up the progressive flock over this.

    Someone is going to get killed tomorrow at the Lincoln Memorial and it won't be a counter-tea partier.

  • Brett L||

    That sounds like projection. The Tea Partiers don't exactly share a rep with the G-8 protestors for breaking shit up and beating up people.

  • ||

    Wouldn't that make them the likely victims, per Gobbler's prediction? If the murder victim will not be a "counter-tea partier", he'd have to be a tea partier.

    No, I am not over-analyzing this completely serious exchange.

  • The Gobbler||

    That's exactly what I meant. Some SEIU thug or the like is going to kill someone tomorrow. I really sense this. The Left has been really ramping up the tension on this. They really, really need a violent act perpatrated upon themselves in order to discredit the Tea Party prior to the Nov. Election, because they now realize the Economy sure as hell isn't going to turn by then.

    FTR, I am a fucking Libertarian, not a progressive. I listen to the Ed show in the background because a very smart man told me that one of the best things you can do is keep yourself apprised of you enemy's beliefs and plans.

  • Brett L||

    Sorry. I got my antis and pros backwards.

  • cynical||

    Um, that's still pretty confusing. Are you suggesting they're going to kill one of their own to make it look like Tea Partiers, or kill a Tea Partier to provoke a violent response, or what?

  • ||

    Probably not, when Soros is offering $250,000 ea. to the widows & families who beat themselves to death with truncheons in camera view

  • ||

    mistyped, forgot the "of those." I am not trying to say George Soros wants widows, families to beat themselves to death purely for cable fodder

  • ||

    Tony. Another Tampa boy done good. And he abandoned the law (he was admitted to the Florida bar but stopped practicing). Gotta respect that.

  • ||

    Not sure if making as obvious a choice as giving up a law career for a career in professional baseball is worthy of respect. I'm guessing every heterosexual male at my firm would do the same thing if given the opportunity.

  • BakedPenguin||

    And probably a few of the non-hetero females...

  • ||

    That's softball, not baseball, you chauvinistic cretin.

  • ||

    Somewhat related story. My firm has a co-ed rec team where right field is generally played by a female who has no idea how to catch. As such, it's considered poor form for a right-handed male who knows what he's doing to hit to right. Earlier this summer I was in the elevator complaining to a teammate about how the team that had beat us the night before only did so by hitting to right. When we got to our floor and began to exit, a woman in the elevator (who we didn't know) interjected, "You know, women can play softball too." I have a pretty good idea which team THAT chick hits for.

  • ||

    The Mets?

  • ||

    Ouch.

  • ||

    So did you guys start hitting it to right too? Or did you go old school and break out the beanballs?

  • ||

    I bet you think that there would be more bean balls thrown if the game did not have umpires, right?

  • ||

    What does baseball have to do with my respect?

  • ChrisO||

    Sportswriters do this stuff because they want the world to know that they are Real Journalists, who all are, of course, barking leftist moonbats.

  • Mike M.||

    Isn't Will Leitch one of the guys that spied on Stuart Scott at a party texting one of his girlfriends for some nookie and then blabbed it to the entire world like a jealous little teenage girl? Fuck that loser.

  • ||

    Yeah, I don't get Deadspin either. I consider myself a pretty big sports fan, but generally speaking I don't give a fuck who's schtumping who at ESPN or which college athlete sexted a picture of his junk.

  • ||

    +1

  • ||

    This whole post was inspired by some random tweet that Matt got from some nobody? Seriously?

  • ||

    The guy has a nose for news

  • Zeb||

    Nobody made you read it.

  • Coeus||

    And, further, contrary to popular opinion, there is not, in fact, anything inherently wrong with being a Republican, or a Democrat.

    I call bullshit.

  • Steve Smith||

    STEVE TRAVEL FAR AFTER CATCH SCENT OF BASEBALL POST ON WIND. STEVE LIKE BASEBALL ALMOST AS MUCH AS RAPE.

  • kilroy||

    Someone's asleep at the Brickbat switch again...

  • kilroy||

    Thank you. I needed that little bit of pissed of to round out the week.

  • BakedPenguin||

    The first thing I thought of when I saw that headline was "Rule 34". However, I really, really, don't want to know.

  • ||

    Oh god, the whining and garment rending that is littering my Facebook news feed, from friends about the Beck thing, is really too much to take.

    Honestly, how did such pissy, bitchy, little girls, who can't take one ounce of dissent near their presence, let alone in it, ever come to power in a republic?

  • ||

    Maybe you shouldn't be monitoring Facebook at work, you goldbricking piece of shit. You're worse than NutraSweet.

  • ||

    It's...um...a marketing tool. Yeah, that's it.

  • ||

    "You're a tool. A beaner tool."

  • ||

    agreed. beginning to think that maybe i'm just getting curmudgeonly at the youth of today, but some of the worst whiners are my age (36) or older. Further proof that no one has learned crap in college since 1985

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    ...I enjoy going ballistic on St. Louis Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa, because he's going to be speaking at the Glenn Beck rally tomorrow at the Lincoln Memorial.

    -Matt Welch

    Shame on you, Matthew.

  • ||

    I tried to read this link but got sent to something about the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial?

  • Steven Smith||

    As someone who recently found out that my favorite actress (Phoebe Nicholls) is a Tory, I'm with you on this one, Welch. If you are going to expect every public figure you admire to have political views similar to your own, it will break your heart every time. All one is entitled to expect is that the athlete, actor, rockstar, etc., who is opining about politics at least has the courtesy to read up on the issues; although I don't agree with LaRussa, he has a long record of advocacy for animal rights, and if he wants to hang out with the Beckians, god bless him.

  • ||

    STEVE(N) SMITH DRAWN TO MEDIOCRE UNAPPEALING ACTRESSES! STEVE INSECURE ABOUT RAPISM, AND NOT THINK PRETTY OR EXTREMELY HIRSUTE FEMALES WILL LIKE HIM!

  • Steven Smith||

    This time, you've gone too far.

  • ||

    If you had just said Kate Beckinsale, everything would have been just fine. But NO.

  • ||

    As someone who recently found out that Phoebe Nicholls is apparently now Charles Sturridge, I'm with you on this one, Smith

  • hmm ||

    Who the fuck is Phoebe Nicholls?

  • Pip||

    What accounts for this madness? Charles Krauthammer notes a pattern:

    Promiscuous charges of bigotry are precisely how our current rulers and their vast media auxiliary react to an obstreperous citizenry that insists on incorrect thinking.-- Resistance to the vast expansion of government power, intrusiveness and debt, as represented by the Tea Party movement? Why, racist resentment toward a black president.-- Disgust and alarm with the federal government's unwillingness to curb illegal immigration, as crystallized in the Arizona law? Nativism.-- Opposition to the most radical redefinition of marriage in human history, as expressed in Proposition 8 in California? Homophobia.-- Opposition to a 15-story Islamic center and mosque near Ground Zero? Islamophobia.Now we know why the country has become "ungovernable," last year's excuse for the Democrats' failure of governance: Who can possibly gover a nation of racist, nativist, homophobic Islamophobes?

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....05233.html

  • ||

    Once again, the Republicans have bested the Democrats by dumbing things down. While the Democrats have an entire menagerie of -isms and -phobias for labeling people who disagree with their agenda, Republicans stick to one accusation across the board: being anti-American.

  • ||

    Ah, Charles Krauthammer, the crippled anti-gun neocon warmongering shitheel that we here at H&R just love so much. You've convinced me! What does he think of Michael Bay?

  • ||

    If you're going to throw out that many adjectives, you should also include "Tony Shalhoub-impersonating."

  • ||

    I like Tony, and didn't want to compliment Krauthammer in any way. He's sort of like Joe Lieberman; he's the worst of all worlds.

  • ||

    Understandable. He sort of looks like Shalhoub if he were left out in the sun too long (in terms of being weathered and wrinkled, not tanned). And as a bonus you know Krauthammer would freak out at the thought of being compared to an Arab-American.

  • Warty||

    Dude, you're aware that Charles Krauthammer is some sort of supervillan, right? I'm not sure what his evil plot is yet, but I do know that The Kraut-Hammer loves nothing more than making examples of those who mock him.

  • ||

    Wasn't he in some M. Night Shamalamadingdong movie with Bruce Willis? Something about comic books?

  • Warty||

    "It was the kids! They called me an ay-rab!"

  • ||

    Krauthammer is rather hawkish, its true.

    But he gets points in book for being completely, unreservedly hostile to the Obama administration at every opportunity. I have yet to hear him call out the Obamatrons on anything and not be right on point.

  • ||

    Just because Krauthammer is hostile to Obama doesn't mitigate in any way how much of a fuckhead he is. Shit, Sean Hannity is unreservedly hostile to Obama as well, and it doesn't change the fact that he's an ape.

  • Jeffersonian||

    Hannity is a total dope. At least Krauthammer can think.

  • ||

    Note that his "Islamophobia" example is the only one that doesn't include an alternative explanation for the conservative position...unless they object to 15-story buildings for some reason.

  • cynical||

    They hate us for our strict zoning laws.

  • ||

    Deadspin is a gawker media site, and they have an obsessive need to prove their progressive bona fides by loudly and illogically snarking at any and all non-progressive political activities.

  • ||

    Deadspin is a gawker media site, and they have an obsessive need to prove their progressive bona fides by loudly and illogically snarking at any and all non-progressive political activities.

    That's better.

  • ||

    I've been stunned at how overtly they shill. They've got multiple blogs--why not just put all of their politics into a, I dunno, political blog?

  • ||

    When did Larussa pass the Florida bar? Upthread, you posted that he actually practiced for a period of time. How long? When?

  • ||

    I'm not sure how much he actually practiced, but I did hear he passed the bar. Maybe back in the 70s?

  • ||

    Actually, Leitch was sort of defending LaRussa. It was other people (e.g., Ken Tremendous/Michael Schur, who has gotten very political since he acquired a Twitter feed) who were up in arms against him.

  • DRM||

    So, "Tony La Rs"?

  • Apologetic California||

    How far are we in Tony La Russa? Balls-deep or prostate examination?

  • Dave Zirin ||

    is a sports "voice" for NPR. What liberal NPR?

  • Ken Tremendous ||

    ran a blog called "Fire Joe Morgan." Racist!

  • ||

    "If you start requiring everyone who cheers for your favorite team has the same political values as you do, you're missing the whole point of sport."

    If I understood this sentence I might agree with it.

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