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Albert Belle: voice of reason

Dec 1, 2010, 10:31 AM EDT

Albert Belle

LeBron James is heading back to Cleveland to face the Cavaliers tomorrow night. It’s probably going to get hostile. Thankfully, we have Albert Belle around to play the part of the sage peacemaker:

From one Cleveland villain to another, Albert Belle hopes LeBron James and Cavaliers fans can play nice Thursday at the Q.  “My advice to LeBron is to take the high road and act professional. I hope the fans do the same.”

And if they don’t, he’s going to throw a ball at them, stalk them, hit them with a corked bat, unleash a profanity-filled tirade at them and quite possibly try to run them down in his truck.

You know, professional stuff.

  1. BC - Dec 1, 2010 at 10:34 AM

    Obviously the Xanax had kicked in by the time he was quoted.

  2. skipperxc - Dec 1, 2010 at 10:36 AM

    “It’s probably going to get hostile.” Understatement much?

  3. kinggeorge96 - Dec 1, 2010 at 10:44 AM

    Great title! My finger clicked this link while my brain was still going, “Whaaa?”

  4. WhenMattStairsIsKing - Dec 1, 2010 at 10:49 AM

    I just hope this trend continues and we end up seeing Kobe Bryant as a marriage counselor, or Scott Boras clients getting non-roster invitations to Spring Training.

  5. Panda Claus - Dec 1, 2010 at 10:53 AM

    Albert Belle, just mentioning his name mocks all Orioles’ fans from the past.

    I call your Albert Belle and raise you a John Rocker.

  6. largebill - Dec 1, 2010 at 11:15 AM

    I saw another article which quoted Belle comparing his return to Cleveland to Lebron’s. It is a really bad comparison. Belle is not from the Cleveland area and had no long term connections there. Belle never said he was committed to Cleveland. Belle did not do a nationally televised infomercial on ESPN to embarrass the city when he left for Chicago. Chicago offered Belle more money and he took it. Sure Belle got booed a little, but I don’t think people hated him for taking more money. We were more upset with Thome, who (like James) pretended he wanted to stay in Cleveland.

    • Old Gator - Dec 1, 2010 at 11:33 AM

      The story on Thome that I’d read was that he did want to stay in Cleveland but that the MLBPA pressured him into taking the Philiadelphia offer so that the other members’ new contract demands wouldn’t be negatively compared to the lower one from the Indians, and that Thome finally conceded, but not without some misgivings.

      • largebill - Dec 1, 2010 at 1:04 PM

        For negotiating purposes the MLBPA’s general policy is against home-team discounts and such. However, I don’t believe they got involved in Thome’s situation. The dollars per year were about the same. Philadelphia offered one year longer than Cleveland did. With Thome having occasional back issues, I understood Cleveland being reluctant to go out to six years. I could not understand Philly wanting him that badly with Howard about ready for the majors.

    • solidzac - Dec 1, 2010 at 11:59 AM

      Belle is not from the Cleveland area and had no long term connections there.

      Lebron isn’t from Cleveland either, and never had any long term connections there aside from his own plans.

      • largebill - Dec 1, 2010 at 12:58 PM

        Lebron is from Akron, Ohio. Not sure if you know Ohio geography, but Akron is pretty darn close to Cleveland. Any reasonable person it is in the Cleveland area.

      • motherscratcher23 - Dec 1, 2010 at 1:15 PM

        I live in Cleveland. I work in Akron. Despite what tWoA would like you to believe, the difference is mainly semantic. The good people of Akron for the most part consider themselves part of Cleveland and root for their teams.

        Except for the despicable bandwagon Steelers fans. But once again, they are in Cleveland as much as Akron.

  7. solidzac - Dec 1, 2010 at 1:29 PM

    Lebron is from Akron, Ohio. Not sure if you know Ohio geography, but Akron is pretty darn close to Cleveland. Any reasonable person it is in the Cleveland area.

    No, it’s in the Akron area. It’s the fifth largest city in the state in its own right – hardly a suburb. And Lebron has said in the GQ interview a few months back that he feels no particular attachment to Akron or the nearby (independent) city of Cleveland, nor is he required to just because your sense of geographical loyalty dictates he must.

    • motherscratcher23 - Dec 1, 2010 at 1:48 PM

      I don’t believe anyone here said Akron is a suburb. And, we are well aware of what tWoA has said in the past.

      What I’m saying is that for all intents and purposes, Cleveland, Akron, and it’s residents are linked geographically, economically, and socially. We all know tWoA’s rooting interests. He is and always will be a front runner. Everyone knows people like this.

      To suggest that because tWoA’s self serving proclamation that the two are “completely different and seperate” is ignorant and ignores the view of the overwhelmingly vast majority of Akron and Cleveland residents.

      • solidzac - Dec 1, 2010 at 1:51 PM

        First of all, I have no idea what your cute acronym stands for. Second of all, do me a favor rand don’t put things in quotes. “Completely different and separate,” something I never said, is different from “independent,” which is what the two places are.

        An actual quote from Lebron’s GQ interview:

        “Clevelanders, because they were the bigger-city kids when we were growing up, looked down on us. So we didn’t actually like Cleveland. We hated Cleveland growing up. There’s a lot of people in Cleveland we still hate to this day.””

        I have no idea how you or the vast majority of people from Akron feel. But Lebron is not beholden to feeling the same way just because you think he should.

  8. motherscratcher23 - Dec 1, 2010 at 2:08 PM

    I apologize for the quotes. I wasn’t trying to imply that you yourself said that. I was just trying to emphasize that that’s the way tWoA wants the two areas to be viewed. Quotes was probably the wrong way to do that.

    tWoA – the Whore of Akron – dubbed by Scott Raab –

    I think we are looking at this differently. I agree that LeBron has repeatedly made this distinction (although I’m not convinced that his articulated feelings are not self serving.) And he’s allowed to feel however he wants, despite what I think.

    However, geography isn’t just some subjective feeling. Just because LeBron told GQ that he hates some people in Cleveland doesn’t make it any more of a true statement that the 2 cities aren’t linked. It’s not really up to LeBron to decide.

    You’re original statement was that LeBron isn’t from Cleveland. What I’m saying is that is wrong. LeBron may not feel like he’s from Cleveland, and he may not want to be from Cleveland, but he is.

  9. ta192 - Dec 1, 2010 at 4:40 PM

    My recollection is that Belle was a villain in the USA outside of Cleveland, not so much around town; James is Cleveland’s definitive villain, but just a BB player in a large chunk of the US. The only guy that couldn’t get away with giving reconciliation advice on a James visit to Cleveland would be the Browns’ owner that moved the team to Baltimore (can’t remember his name to save me)…in his day, as hated as LeBron is…

    • motherscratcher23 - Dec 1, 2010 at 5:48 PM

      Actually, I think Modell would be Cleveland’s “definitive Villain”. James is up there to be sure. But Modell is still more hated. James is only more recent so the wounds are fresher. has had a poll up for quite a while on who is the bigger villian, LeBron or Modell. Modell is leading 57% to 43%.

      As far as Belle, I doubt you’d find many Clevelanders with much animosity towards him.

      • ta192 - Dec 1, 2010 at 10:26 PM

        If those were vote results in a political race, 57-43 would be a decent ass kicking. Nice to know there are still people in the US who can hold a grudge besides me. Still bothers me, though, that I couldn’t remember Art Modell’s name…getting old…

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