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Dallas Braden and A-Rod: what a difference a week makes

May 9, 2010, 7:21 PM EDT

Braden celebrates.jpgIt was just over two weeks ago when Alex Rodriguez walked over Dallas Braden’s mound — maybe on purpose, maybe not — kicking off a petty little feud in which no one has come off looking particularly classy.

Braden barked about it being “his mound” like he was unhinged. A-Rod looked like a pompous ass making reference to Braden’s “handful of wins” after the game. Braden looked like a low-rent wannabe something or other with his “we don’t do much talking in the 209″ rebop last week.  A-Rod continued the pattern of classlessness just this weekend by claiming he didn’t want to comment any further because he didn’t want to extend Braden’s “15 minutes of fame,” clearly implying that Braden wouldn’t have any basis for fame separate and apart from that which A-Rod gave him.

That’s certainly not the case anymore. Braden is part of one of baseball’s most exclusive fraternities, becoming one of the nineteen men in history to throw a perfect game.

A-Rod seems to sense that the narrative has shifted.  Reached by reporters at Fenway Park immediately after the perfect game, Rodriguez said: “Good for him.
He threw a perfect game, and even better, he beat the Rays.”
That’s about the best answer one can give in the situation. He acknowledged the feat and kept it to baseball. The matter, at least from Rodriguez’s perspective, seems to be closed.

For his part, Braden didn’t say anything provocative after the game, holding true to the alleged rep of his home area code and tacitly agreeing with A-Rod to bury the hatchet. That is, unless Rodriguez is going to respond to Braden’s grandmother.  She was at the game and, according to Susan Slusser of San Francisco Chronicle, had this to say the moment someone shoved a microphone into her face: “stick it, A-Rod!”

That’s funny, but ultimately inconsequential, because I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess that A-Rod isn’t about to go after Braden’s grandmother.  It’s Mother’s Day. Let her have the last word.

And let us close the book on the Braden-Rodriguez feud. Each got their shots in, each had their bad moments, but it ended with a perfect game on a sparkling Sunday afternoon, and that means baseball wins.

But then again, baseball always wins, doesn’t it?

  1. Whart? - May 10, 2010 at 2:17 AM

    What piece of news is here again? I don’t see one minus the perfect game.
    Who cares what A-Rod did two weeks ago?
    We have ourselves a perfect game.
    Craig Calcaterra can’t write worth a damn.

  2. Joey B - May 10, 2010 at 9:15 AM

    “I just bet you were waiting for an excuse to say that to someone. Anyone. Sorry I had to be the one to give it to you. Read my mea culpa above, and then go take a tranquilizer, O Holier-than-Thou.”
    Dude, as I have explained to you before, regular people can live with each other without having spew vitriol everytime they open their mouth. I’m sure you didn’t know about Braden’s mom, but there was also no reason to insult his mom either.
    And FWIW, there is no reason to insult the trailer park people. Kids don’t come into this world thinking that they want to grow up poor. Just because you’ve made it doesn’t mean you have to ridicule those that haven’t. When you ridicule poor trailer park people, it’s an easy enough translation that you’re making fun of the people I grew up with in the Bronx. You need to let go of the hatred.

  3. Joey B - May 10, 2010 at 9:17 AM

    “Yeah because when a classless piece of filth makes a mistake and ignores it by trying to hide behind weak poorly worded responses like;”
    Post 1 was 10:12, post 2 was 10:16. There was no way he could’ve seen the apology.

  4. T - May 10, 2010 at 9:18 AM

    Hey Alan – get your facts straight – the Yankees are 1/2 game behind the Rays at the conclusion of all games on Sunday – congratulations to Dallas, it was an amazing win and you are definately in a exclusive fraternity – too bad you have fans who can’t figure out who’s in first place and who’s in second.

  5. Oldtimer - May 10, 2010 at 9:32 AM

    I never understood what all the commotion was about anyway. When has A-hole ever shown any class? Consider the source.

  6. MK - May 10, 2010 at 9:48 AM

    Hey T, when Alan’s post was made – timestamped 7:44pm last night – the Yankees were in first place. Looks like it’s you who should get your facts straight.

  7. Church of the Perpetually Outraged - May 10, 2010 at 9:49 AM

    I never understood what all the commotion was about anyway. When has A-hole ever shown any class? Consider the source.

    Let’s see, moving over from short to 3rd during the ASG to allow Ripken to play there in his final year. Volunteering to play 3rd and let an inferior SS in Jeter continue to play. The way he works with the young guys on the team like Cano.
    There are lots of examples, but people just like to stick to the ones reported, ad nauseum, that confirm their bias against a particular player.

  8. Old Gator - May 10, 2010 at 9:50 AM

    Well obviously I’m grateful for your pastoral guidance. Although our correspondences sometimes takes a while to show up on this board, some go up right away. In this case, post 1 – my apology – went up almost instantly, which is something I made absolutely certain of because I felt like such an idiot about my original comment. So whether my charming interlocutor above was able to see it or not remains a wide open question.
    .
    Aside from that, what is this “hatred” garbage? Basically, just a load of two-bit pop psychologizing. There is a difference between “hatred” and “contempt,” for example – that’s why there are two different words for them. It’s not “poverty” that I often goof on, since as a socialist and freethinker I find the negative moralization of poverty one of the most atrocious things about the American mentality. It’s a self-limiting, cloistered mindset that valorizes ignorance, semi-literacy and a juvenile machismo – like Barden’s – that’s my target. If I satirize a lifestyle, especially one that I believe generates so much of the recidivist and irresponsible political noise and kitsch culture we’re subjected to these days, it may not be to your taste but then presumptuous apostrophes like yours to me, and the occasional snide asides about my comments that you’re prone to post, aren’t to my taste, either. I generally ignore them as they deserve to be ignored and I don’t believe I ever take the same snitty low road you seem to be able to travel along so lightheartedly. Whereas scatterbrain and okobijicat called me out on my remark about Barden’s mother in no uncertain terms, “piece of filth” was a pretty hysterical overreaction, whether the idiot who uncorked it read my apology or not. It stank of the same sanctimony as your response, but at least it was an honest, if not hyperbolic, cry from the gut instead of a posturing, condescending, cloying belaboring of the obvious.

  9. RM - May 10, 2010 at 10:02 AM

    Great accomplishment but the truth is that when his career is over he will be right there with Don Larsen and Johnny Vander Meer as career sub-500 pitchers who had one moment of glory.

  10. jandrew121 - May 10, 2010 at 10:07 AM

    This want to be reporter is an idiot. Arod is not perfect, but those comments were out of bounds. As fars as the Clampets,I mean the Braden family is concerned they are worse. Now he has his grandma,or aunt,or mother defending him. Come on now, they can do better than that.

  11. ynot - May 10, 2010 at 10:41 AM

    Wow – that is a mouthful. I really think way too much thought went into the reply. While I enjoy reading some of your comments, you clearly take yourself way too serious. I can refer you to a great editor if you are looking for a book deal; this is a sports blog man – not a history class.

  12. Joey B - May 10, 2010 at 10:48 AM

    “It stank of the same sanctimony as your response, but at least it was an honest, if not hyperbolic, cry from the gut instead of a posturing, condescending, cloying belaboring of the obvious.”
    If it sounds condescending, it is only because you know that you are wrong, and you know how obvious it is. It always sounds more condescending when one is corrected on very simple matters. Correcting 2+2 will always be more condescending than explaining the easy way to calculate 75^2.
    You didn’t become wrong when you found out that the Braden’s mom was dead. You became wrong the moment you chose to insult someone that you knew nothing about. If you don’t understand that you should not insult someone you know nothing about, then you need to talk to someone about your behavior.

  13. Joey B - May 10, 2010 at 10:51 AM

    “Great accomplishment but the truth is that when his career is over he will be right there with Don Larsen and Johnny Vander Meer as career sub-500 pitchers who had one moment of glory.”
    He’s actually been pretty decent. 17-15 with a 3.86 over the past 3 years, on a not-so-good team.

  14. Darryl - May 10, 2010 at 10:52 AM

    OG – I’m sorry that so many people in this forum obviously don’t get it. I haven’t stopped laughing for 10 minutes! That was outstanding!!

  15. Old Gator - May 10, 2010 at 11:00 AM

    “If it sounds condescending, it is only because you know that you are wrong, and you know how obvious it is.”
    .
    Well yeah – that’s why I apologized in the first place. Are you missing this because you’re too dense to pick it up, or are you missing it because it’s just in your smarmy nature to grab every possible oportunity to ooze self-righteousness?
    .
    “You became wrong the moment you chose to insult someone that you knew nothing about.”
    .
    See my first comment above. There are nuances to this point but I won’t waste them on you.
    .
    “If you don’t understand that you should not insult someone you know nothing about, then you need to talk to someone about your behavior.”
    .
    Well, since we’ve already established that I do understand that – in fact, had pretty well established that I understood it in my original apology – this is just one more case of your love for overloading the outhouse. You can’t seem to shake that reflexive, pop-psychologizing, sanctimonious attitude. Don’t you ever get tired of dispensing advice through your cloaca?

  16. ynot - May 10, 2010 at 11:07 AM

    You should probably turn down the nitrous oxide. OG’s comments, while well thought out (read: contrived and stuffy), were not funny. If you have 10 minutes to spare to just sit laughing at nonsensical comments, you have too much time on your hands.

  17. Old Gator - May 10, 2010 at 11:15 AM

    Always happy to be of service. I think.
    .
    Replying to comment from ynot: every so often someone pops up with “this is a sports blog.” Ackcherley, discussion on here ranges all over the map, given that baseball, like all sports, intersects with economic, political, social, philosophical and aesthetic issues on a full time basis. Even those halcyon weekend games of my youth, watching Mantle, Maris, Mays, Throneberry and so forth, were circumscribed by advertising on the fences and scoreboards and mezzanine facades and the scorecard and even the backs of the tickets, which also listed in a teeny font designed by a typesetter in Kandor all the possible legal infractions you could commit just sitting at the stadium, and all the things that might happen to you if you committed them. Your fifth straight Topps pack from which Elio Chacohn peered out behind the slab of stale gum frustrated you in your quest for that Al Kaline or Harmon Killibrew. And every third baseball card swap ended in a fistfight. You get the idea. Baseball is no tin suit we can put on to shield us from the real world, paens to escapism notwithstanding. As Ned Kelly once remarked at a particularly significant (for him) moment, such is life.
    .
    By the way, thanks for the offer, but I am an editor.

  18. Old Gator - May 10, 2010 at 11:28 AM

    I’m as pleased by the idea of having amused Darryl as I am indifferent to having irritated you. On the other hand, you might consider publishing a treatise on your philosophy of life. Clearly you believe it is substantive enough to warrent dispensing advice to others about what they should be doing with their time. There seems to be a lot of dispensing of advice going on on this thread, so I’ll just add my own to the pile. As a professional editor, I would recommend including the system you use to distinguish between the worth of the time you spent reading this blog, becoming exasperated and commenting on it, and the time Darryl spent reading it and being amused and commenting on it. I can not only offer my own superb editorial services (assuming you work so hard during all that time you haven’t got on your hands that you can actually afford me), but I can even bring you to one of my own publishers in the unlikely event that your manuscript is worth publishing in the first place.

  19. John - May 10, 2010 at 11:36 AM

    It must be “Hate Old Gator Day,” no? Well I for one refuse to bash on ya… but only due to our mutual respect for HST & Vonnegut, other wise I no doubt would add a smart a$$ comment or two just to add fuel to the fire. MARK MY WORDS!!!

  20. ynot - May 10, 2010 at 11:37 AM

    Your knack for getting in the last word is a telltale sign that you are an editor. This blog is certainly not my preferred source of information on the ecomomics of baseball. If I want serious commentary, I will ask Dr. Zimbalist. However, you have made some great comments in the past and if you didn’t use Roget as a shield to defend yourself, you may garner some fans beyond the 10-minute-laughing Darryl.

  21. Joey B - May 10, 2010 at 11:43 AM

    “Well, since we’ve already established that I do understand that – in fact, had pretty well established that I understood it in my original apology – this is just one more case of your love for overloading the outhouse. You can’t seem to shake that reflexive, pop-psychologizing, sanctimonious attitude. Don’t you ever get tired of dispensing advice through your cloaca?”
    No, this is your original apology, “My apologies to everyone for that. I had no idea about Braden’s mom. The criticism was well deserved.”.
    You apologized because you insulted a dead woman. You should be apologizing for gratuitously insulting someone you know nothing about.
    IRT getting tired? It depends. I’ll occasionally give out advice on certain subjects, and if the recipient chooses to make decisions that are not in their best interests, then so be it.
    But when it comes to living in a society where we should be able discuss things without resorting to insulting people, I will continue to try to get people to understand the golden rule. Treat others as you would like to be treated.

  22. Oldtmer - May 10, 2010 at 11:47 AM

    Church,
    Your comment:
    “Let’s see, moving over from short to 3rd during the ASG to allow Ripken to play there in his final year. Volunteering to play 3rd and let an inferior SS in Jeter continue to play. The way he works with the young guys on the team like Cano.”
    Allowing Ripken to play there was not his idea, you can bet on that. It was strictly PR.
    Jeter may be inferior, (I don’t agree)but A-Rod agreed only because of the backlash he would have suffered at the hands of the Yankee faithful for deposing their “favorite son”. On any other team in MLB, he would be playing short.
    If he works with Cano and the other young players on the Yanks, let’s hope he leaves the class lessons to anyone else. This guy doesn’t do anything positive unless it “pumps up his image”. I wonder how much help he would give someone if he thought they were a threat to his position. Time will tell you the answer to that one.

  23. Old Gator - May 10, 2010 at 11:51 AM

    And where the hell have you been? Look, I wasn’t too worried or anything – it’s pretty clear that Craig’s prediction that the Braves were gonna take the division isn’t something about which he’s going to want to tell his grandchildren. So, I figured at the very least you’d be here for the playoffs with your own inimitable prognosticative style. I thought maybe you’d gone in for a triple bypass after all those horrible horsemeat and velveeta sandwiches, but since, as Sarah Palin keeps reminding us, this is the finest medical system in the world, I had every confidence that you’d be back in time.
    .
    Eh. I set myself up for all this shit with my own dumbass comments way, way up above. I have to thank scatterbrain and whatsisname for their precision chastening, with which I have no problem. It’s a couple of other nincompoops here who want to generate the rest of the nonsense, but I doubt if they ever intended for me to have so much fine with it – until, of course, I start getting bored with it.
    .
    FYI I hear someone plans to re-make Slaughterhouse Five. I’m not happy about that, especially when Tim Burton and Cat’s Cradle appear to dwell in parallel universes and really ought to get together. In any event I think the original film handled the Tralfamadore scenes perfectly and I’m really concerned that a remake would give us the bar scene on Tatooine instead. Yeccchhh.

  24. Old Gator` - May 10, 2010 at 12:00 PM

    Oh Keeper of the Golden Rule, we can only be so grateful for your wisdom and your profound ability to split hairs like an industrial laser. Ave, ave. Sorry the original apology wasn’t global enough for you; given the bevy of sportswriter shrikes upon whom you appear to model yourself, I probably should have thrown in the steroid use as well. But at least we more or less have something in common: I don’t think your advice is worth taking, and you can’t take to heart my concern that you sound like a posturing jackass. I guess it all evens out.

  25. Darryl - May 10, 2010 at 12:07 PM

    Nitrous oxide? Clever. Really. Take it easy, Mr. ynot. Just because I have a job that (a)does not require me to wear my employers name and my name on my shirt, and (b)allows me to spend time reading sports articles (probably because I work in sports) is no reason for all the hostility.

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