There weren’t any performances this week worthy of the Hot Stove Player of the Week (well, maybe Zach Parise), so we’re going to go with an all Hot Stove Schmuck of the Week edition.
Spring training is on the way, but all we’re hearing about is steroids (thanks Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Miguel Tejada and our grand winner for this week, Alex Rodriguez). There isn’t any prize this week. When you’re a schmuck, you don’t get a prize.
Schmuck of the Week
Alex Rodriguez: A-Roid, A-Fraud, A-Fill-in-the-Blank is dominating the headlines this week. Are you ready for one big distraction, Yankees? He lied, cheated, claimed he didn’t really know what he was taking and only took whatever it was during his Texas Rangers' years.
His interview was one smooth piece of PR, but just raised more questions, and he, like every other guilty player, only confessed after being caught. You don’t get any points for that.
If he spent his career just playing baseball instead of narcissistically being preoccupied with his marketability, public image and legacy, he would have been a lot better off. He’s always been contrived, image-obsessed and phony, so sure, we’ll believe him this time.
Let’s also give a great big schmuck shout-out to the Players Association, Bud Selig and the owners, who all had their hands in the cookie jar of the steroids era.
New York Rangers: They finally won a game (but barely) on Wednesday, but when you lose 10-2, like they did on Friday in Dallas, you’ve earned yourself a place on the Schmuck of the Week list. They followed up that pummeling by getting shut out in New Jersey. Will they ever learn to play hard every single game?
Mike D’Antoni/Knicks: The Knicks' coach didn’t know the team had a foul to give against Portland, which cost them the game. Oops. Then they got creamed by the Warriors by forgetting to play defense. They started the week by losing to Boston and finished with a loss to the Clippers. Four games, four losses.
Brett Favre: The QB finally retired (or did he?). We’ll throw him on this list just for old time’s sake. Those first 11 games of the season weren’t all that bad, were they? Now if we can only forget about those last five. I don’t think the Jets will be retiring the #4 any time soon.
Plaxico Burress: We’ll put him on the list, too, so we can keep being reminded of his schmuckness. His agent is shopping him around to the rest of the league, but he forgot to check in with the Giants about that. How many times can Burress piss off the Giants?