George Steinbrenner must be thanking Satan that he’s dead and gone from New York. Imagine what Carmelo Anthony would do to him upon learning that the former Yankees owner was a snitch.

The New York Times’ Richard Sandomir reports that Steinbrenner worked with the FBI on several cases in the 1970s and 80s. He “cooperated with the Federal Bureau of Investigation on national security cases and was willing to let it stage an organized-crime raid at Yankee Stadium”. President Reagan granted him a pardon in 1989 for his convictions for illegal contributions to Richard Nixon’s 1972 presidential campaign as well as obstruction of justice.

Find the FBI documents here.

Steinbrenner began helping with “a matter of vital interest” in the late 1970s. He quickly moved up to involving himself in thwarting terrorist plots that put him and his family in danger. I assume, without further details, that the situation was similar to Munich where he played the Ehud Barak role.

It gets better. World collide. Sandomir also notes that Steinbrenner attempted to get a pardon using the vaunted “Was That Wrong” excuse.

“Applicant stated that he would not have allowed the $25,000 corporate contribution if he had known it was illegal,” the memo said. It said that he had contributed $75,000 personally to Nixon’s campaign and would have made it $100,000 if he knew he could not make the corporate contribution.

Eat that, Costanza. Steinbrenner finally got his pardon but at what cost? American hero or rat-faced snitch? What would Billy Martin have said? Wait a minute. What do we really know about the night he died? He kept coming around. Maybe he heard too much. Watergate, terrorists, Billy Martin arresting people who try to piss during the 7th inning stretch. The next time you talk about conspiracies involving the Yankees, you can tell everyone it’s not jealousy. It’s the truth.

How many of you laughed when you heard that Dana Stubblefield took steroids during his NFL career? It was probably funnier to Redskins fans who were forced to watch him take suck to epic levels like every other big-money Synder signing. Could you blame him for lying about taking steroids? Who would have believed it? Next thing, Gilbert Brown would have claimed he was bulimic.

Stubblefield can’t quit failing and getting in trouble for it. He was sentenced to 90 days in jail for stealing his ex-girlfriend’s mail. Did we mention he’s already on probation after being nailed for lying to federal investigators during the BALCO scandal?

Stubblefield didn’t just roll up to her mailbox and take her mail as one would think. He filled out a change of address form so her mail would get delivered to him. Smooth. Her mail included unemployment checks but he was probably after those Valu-Pak direct mailers. He was hoping to get those “Buy One, Get Three Free” coupons from Domino’s. Expect Bruce Allen to sign him after his release. Someone needs to take Albert Haynesworth’s place.

UPDATE: Did you know that Stubblefield played a prisoner in the Ben Affleck tour de shart Reindeer Games? H/T to Joe Eskenazi of SF Weekly for digging this up.

Stubblefield, fittingly, played a prisoner in the 2000 stinker Reindeer Games alongside Ben Affleck. During the making of that film, the former NFL great inadvertently knocked Affleck unconscious, hospitalizing him.

That’s why he got probation and 90 days as opposed to 20 years.

Reading Between the Headlines

It’s been a few weeks since we’ve had headlines, so what did we miss?  You knew I wasn’t going to write about that guy in South Florida.  And don’t even think there would have been anything related to the ole’ Gunslinger, either. On to some headlines:

I know no one works in NYC past noon on summer Fridays, but don’t you think Andrew Marchand mailed this one in a little early?  New York sports writers have to be the most unoriginal collection of “journalists” in the country.  Other than this ESPN article being written as if it belonged in US Weekly, it’s based completely off of conjecture and fear-mongering, if there was such a thing in sports writing.  Let’s get real: Chamberlain is 24 years old, has four pretty good pitches, throws hard, doesn’t get injured, had a sub-3.00 ERA in the playoffs last season, and has been jerked around pretty much his entire career amidst ridiculous expectations.  Even with his 5.79 ERA (in only 37 innings), his K/BB ratio is 2.85 (Jonathan Papelbon is 2.6 and Carlos Marmol is 2.8).  And you want to run him out of town?  You’re an idiot.  Stop following Lupica around and do some actual reporting.

By the time you read this, there’s a good chance Daly has had a meltdown and will actually be 6 over for the

John Daly: American Hero.

tournament, but hey, I’m rooting for him.  If you have the stones to dress like this, then you have my support.  Plus, he drinks diet coke and rips Marlboros like a sorority girl in between classes. 

“Hey, let’s spend a boatload of money to dedicate an entire evening to collectively stroking the egos of perhaps the most ego-maniacal people in the world.”  No thanks.  Not even Erin Andrews could save that mess of painfully unfunny performances and horrible-looking suits.

Big deal.  Television ratings are forever skewed because people have about 300 other options of things to watch as opposed to an overly-commercialized exhibition that doesn’t mean very much.  It certainly doesn’t help when you put 82 guys on the roster and the manager leaves the one with the most home runs on the bench at the end of the game, but what are you gonna do?  By the way, Alex Rodriguez has 299 career stolen bases.  David Ortiz has 10.  Just saying…

I think at this point T.O. probably isn’t a real difference maker for any team, but it’d be great to see him on the Jets or somewhere else high profile so he could completely and utterly submarine the team’s season in front of a national audience.  Personally, I think he belongs in Washington with the rest of the 2004 Pro Bowl team, but that’s just me.  It’d be hilarious to watch Little Danny continue his trek into Steinbrenner-dom by bringing in T.O. to implode the team while Mike Shanahan hides in a tanning bed.  Or, everyone could get along and the team would just stink as usual.  That could be fun, too.

It was pretty easy to hate Steinbrenner in the 80′s and 90′s, but as he got older and the team maintained a semblance of calm, it was hard not to see him as a caricature of his former blustery self.  For me, the jury is still out.  You can’t classify Steinbrenner as anything but an enigma: a guy with major daddy issues who was a real jerk when it came to business, but tried to rectify his extreme churlishness by being nice to sick kids and poor people.

Could the Yankees have won more in the 80′s and 90′s if King George kept quiet?  Sure, but who is to say they wouldn’t have been worse if Big Stein kept the mega profits he made off the team and didn’t instill a culture of fear winning at all costs within his organization?  The casual acceptance of being mediocre on the field but still being profitable off it is what has plagued teams in huge markets like the Mets, Cubs or Dodgers for years.  In any case, New York won’t be the same without him.

Ok, that’s it for me.  Have a great weekend.  RIP Boss.  You may be gone, but never forgotten.

Reading Between the Headlines

As we glide into warmer weather and brighter days, we’re still stuck with a deluge of crappy stories.  I’m wondering when we’ll get a break from the sexual assaults, projectile vomiting, and the Baltimore Orioles.  Prepare for your weekend away from the mess with some headlines:

Granted, it’s really early, and I’m pretty sure Game 7 for both of their series isn’t scheduled until the beginning of June, but I can’t think of a worse follow-up to the NHL’s success at the Vancouver games than to lose its two marquee players in the first round of the playoffs.  That would be devastating.  I consider myself fairly knowledgeable about sports, but if you asked me to name 100 current NHLers right now, I probably couldn’t do it.  The NHL needs a Caps-Pens matchup more than a USA medal finish in just about every way.

New Jersey?  Phillies fan?  Drunk?  Too, too easy.  Very quickly, let me just check something:


Yep, big fat pig.  Have fun in jail, jerk.  And where was Green Man when you need him?  Speaking of which: dressing up as Green Man is TIRED.  Green Man first came on the scene in September 2007.  Since that time, I can say without a doubt, I’ve seen at least one attention-seeking pencil neck dressed as Green Man at each outdoor concert and sporting event I’ve attended.  Whatever happened to going to a game, having a few beers, betting on the condiment race and scoping out other dudes’ girlfriends?

  • Jay-Z is suing David Ortiz after Ortiz named his Dominican nightclub after the rapper’s chain of 40/40 clubs. 

Rough month for Papi: benched by Tito Francona, he’s struck out in half of his at bats, and now he’s being sued.  I wonder if part of the settlement will include an agreement indicating who’s overpriced sinkhole gets to go out of business first.  Celebrity-themed restaurants and bars are almost always terrible tourist traps.  I will write more about this phenomenon one day.  Dan Majerle, you’re on notice.

First of all: if you go to a bar and see a celebrity and you’re stalking doesn’t convince them to a) leave, or b) call the cops, please don’t record them.  It’s weird, it’s creepy and you’re ruining it for the rest of us.  I’ve hung out in places where celebrities have let loose and let me tell you: it’s awesome.  But as soon as you pull out a camera, you ruin it for everyone else.  Now Jerry Jones will never go to a public place and drink ever again.  See what you did, nerds?  Jerry, I’ll get drunk with you and you can call me a “piece of s—“ anytime you want. 

We’ve discussed “Young Dummies with Money Syndrome” before, so I won’t get into it again, but I will say if there is a dumber guy in football than Ben Roethlisberger, I’d sure as hell like to meet him.  When you’ve got Terry Bradshaw giving you life advice, you must be really, really slow.  And how will the Steelers be punishing him?  By trading away their best receiver for nothing?  Never mind, they already did that.

Whenever I think of kidney stones, I think of Kramer



JERRY: What’s with you?

KRAMER: I got a stone.

JERRY: What stone?

KRAMER: A kidney stone.

JERRY: What is that, anyway?

KRAMER: It’s a, it’s a stony mineral concretion, formed abnormally in the kidney. And this jagged shard of calcium pushes its way through the ureter into the bladder. It’s forced out through the urine!

JERRY: Oh, that’s gotta hurt.

Indeed.  Have a great weekend.  Let’s hope for a weekend where everybody stays out of jail and keeps their pants on.

George Costanza was Right

In this episode of Seinfeld, George, finding himself obsessed with  Elaine, attempts to order baldness cream from the “Hair Restoration Clinic” in Beijing.  Because they don’t speak english, George spends several tortuous minutes over the phone attempting to purchase the cream.  At which point Jerry asks, “Why are you doing this?”  George responds, “Why do I do anything?  Tsss…For women.”

And thus, Erin Andrews is one reason why millions of men will get out of bed everyday just to fight the good fight at work, school, or whereever.  Happy to see her back out there and enjoying herself.