Word is that Michael Vick is about to start his construction work for $10 hour, which of course upsets me because my son has been out of school for over two weeks and he still hasn’t found a summer job. Vick must have a better agent.
But I guess it could be worse. I just found the globe’s most desperate wage-earner.
Jose Canseco – what are you thinking?
This week’s Countdown.
Given Canseco, through his literary excellence (sorry), did more to clean up baseball than anybody else, he’s probably deserving of a Pulitzer or a Nobel or at least the baseball commissioner’s job, which come to think of it has been vacant for several years now. But outing celebrities and writing books and going on Nightline must not pay like it used to. Because abject poverty and too many fried braincells is the only possible explanation for Canseco ever going into a boxing/MMA ring again. Unless he just lives for being a punchline.
Haven’t found the video yet, just pictures.
UPDATE!!! JUST FOUND THE VIDEO!!! (COMMENT: OUCH)
But Canseco apparently was knocked out in Japan this morning (our time) in a mixed martial arts bout by a 7-2, 330-pound South Korean super heavyweight named Hong Man Choi. Until visuals emerge, let’s assume it looked something like when Canseco was flattened by former NFL kick returner Vai Sikahema last summer in the first round of a celebrity boxing match. Here’s the video of that (sorry for the commentary; I looked all over YouTube to avoid Stephen A. Smith but it couldn’t be avoided).
This makes at least three bouts for Canseco: two knockout losses and a boxing draw with Danny Bonaduce. Bash Brother, my hiney. Maybe he should just stick to fighting members of the Partridge Family. Start with David Cassidy and work your way up. Either that or get back on steroids. Canseco entered the ring carrying a baseball bat to the music, “Wild Thing.” But he soon got his face tattooed and twisted his right knee while basically trying to get away.
How desperate is Canseco for money? His home was foreclosed on last July. He was arrested in the fall for trying to smuggle a female fertility drug into the U.S. from Mexico. I guess he wants to have kids before menopause hits. He’s scheduled to fight again July 24 in a celebrity boxing match against Bill “Wingador” Simmons, a chicken wing eating champion (honest). Promoter Damon Feldman was quoted in the New York Daily News as saying: “Where else can you make fast money like this?”
It’s one reason why Canseco has accepted a wide variety of offbeat jobs to make ends meet. He said he will work on getting his knee back in shape before taking on any more fights. “I have no idea if I’ll do this again,” Canseco said. “I’ve gotta get my knee better before I commit to anything like this.”
Hey, I’ve got a job for Canseco: He can play outfield for the Braves! It’s not like they’d take a step back. Left to right, we’ve got Garrett Anderson (.256, 0 homers, 9 RBI), Jordan Schafer (.205, 2 HRs, 8 RBI) and Jeff Francoeur (.259, 3 HRs, 21RBI). Wasn’t Frank Wren supposed to fix this problem this winter? OK, starting pitching was the top priority. But the recent 6-3 homestand notwithstanding, this team goes nowhere without more production. The only positive out of this is nobody can say, “We should’ve gotten Ken Griffey Jr.” Because the last time I checked, the broken down Griffey already has sat out 13 games this season and is hitting .232 with five homers and 18 RBI. The major miscalculation remains Andruw Jones: While he’s cooled off since his fast start, Jones is still hitting .290 with the Texas Rangers, with four homers, 12 RBI, .438 on-base percentage and a .565 slugging average in a part-time role. He also made his first career start as a first-baseman the other night.
Have several leftovers from my minor-league trip to watch John Smoltz pitch against the Single-A Augusta Green Jackets the other night. But this might be my favorite: It was a “Thirsty Thursday,” which means $1 beer, which means nobody was thirsty — or standing straight — by the time the game was over. It was about the sixth inning when a, well, no-longer-thirsty, fan stumbled up the stairs at Lake Olmstead Stadium to top of the stands behind home plate and told the public address announcer: “I’ve lost my [designated] driver. Can you make an announcement?” Not sure whether he’s still there waiting for his ride or not.
OK. Story No. 2. The Green Jackets have the usual number of off-beat minor-league promotions. But sometimes they top everybody. They recently sold discount “juice” boxes after Manny Ramirez was busted for steroids. Also, any fan named Manny or who could prove they had failed a drug test was admitted free.
The Green Jackets won a “Veeckie” award – given for the wackiest minor-league promotions – last season when they held a Brett Favre Night on Aug. 4. Of course, it was tied to Favre’s flip-flop on retirement. They held consecutive ceremonies, both retiring and then unretiring his jersey number. And all fans in attendance received free flip-flips. Augusta GM Nick Brown said the team is planning to hold another evening mocking Favre, assuming this latest Hamlet act is ever complete. “We retired and unretired Favre’s number #4 last season,” he said. “We’re fully prepared to once again honor Favre for his great career and related lack of decision-making abilities. We’ll honor Favre as many times as he decides to flip-flop on this issue.”
This is a picture of Holly McPeak, a professional beach volleyball player. She actually retired two weeks ago, but I see no reason(s) why the Tuesday Countdown should exclude her from our coverage of the AVP Tour, which comes to Atlantic Station this weekend. I used to play beach volleyball. But it wasn’t long before I realized sitting on the sand was a lot easier, plus it allowed me the benefits of holding a beer while watching several budding Holly McPeaks jumping and diving and getting all sandy and sweaty and stuff. I’m sure you can find more insightful analysis of the AVP Tour somewhere. But I think I know my audience.
Hawks general manager Rick Sund has a great summer planned. There’s no real vacation until August, which is when he will have hip replacement surgery and then spend some weeks rehabbing. And before then? Just try to figure out the team’s roster in the most important off-season in over a decade. Has he been getting any sleep. “No,” he said. But he’s not overwhelmed by the number of decisions on his plate this summer. “I was in Seattle the year we won the Northwest Division (2004-05),” he said. “We had nine free agents that year on our 12-man roster, or 13 if you include a guy on the injured list. So this isn’t that unusual.”
If you missed it, the Denver Nuggets whacked Los Angeles Lakers late Monday night, throwing the potential Kobe-LeBron finals matchup into further peril, which of course would lead to the crumbling of Western Civilization. NBA commissioner David Stern and several lieutenants put out leg out the window when Orlando took a 2-1 series lead over Cleveland. For what it’s worth, an Orlando-Denver finals would be incredibly entertaining. It’s just that nobody would watch.
Construction. $10 an hour. Just a thought. Find a better agent.