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Mark Grace on his firing: “I have nobody to blame but myself”

Jan 15, 2013, 6:52 AM EDT

Mark Grace Mug Shot

Mark Grace lost his job as the Diamondbacks’ TV analyst last season following his arrest for drunken driving. His second arrest, it must be noted.  Yesterday he offered his first public comments on his arrest and firing. He’s waxing contrite and responsible:

“I have nobody to blame but myself … I did this. The Diamondbacks didn’t do anything. I think it’s important to own this. I own this.”

He goes on trial for four felony counts of aggravated DUI, which will likely land him in prison since this is his second DUI in less than two years and folks who do that are not probation-eligible.

Of note, however, is the fact that, despite the fact the Diamondbacks fired him from the booth, they did allow him to participate in their annual fantasy camp, which is where these comments were made. Also:

“Mark has always been an important part of our family, so we would naturally be here to support him,” Diamondbacks President Derrick Hall said. “While he still has some legal issues to overcome, we look forward to his future involvement in the organization.”

Grace is extremely lucky to have this kind of support when he’s done nothing to truly deserve it. But deserve or not, the Diamondbacks’ willingness to keep Grace in the fold in however diminished a capacity may make it more likely that he’ll make better choices in the future than he would have had everyone turned their back on him.

  1. Chris Fiorentino - Jan 15, 2013 at 7:19 AM

    I just can’t find any room for sympathy for rich a-holes who drive drunk. You have a zillion dollars. Call a frigging cab to take you home that night…then when you wake up and are sobered up, call another frigging cab to take you back to your car. For probably .000001% of your worth, you could have avoided going to prison and losing your job.

    Idiot.

    • greymares - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:09 AM

      you are 100% correct but i guarantee there’s not a single one of these guys that even considered the fact that they may be drunk. the decision has to be made when they ARE sober.

    • pjmitch - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:59 AM

      Well, you are 95% right. But what does being rich have to do with it? ANYBODY who drives after drinking, doesn’t pay for the cab or whatever scenario we can come up with on this issue is an idiot.

      The cab for anyone is a whole lot cheaper, smarter and responsible than the alternative.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Jan 15, 2013 at 10:13 AM

        The only reason rich has anything to do with it is that when you are rich you have absolutely zero excuse for driving while drunk. None. Nada. You can afford to pay someone to drive you home. You can afford to get a ride to and from the bar. or you can pay whatever it costs to take a cab.

        Whereas, when you aren’t rich, then you don’t have the money for a cab or a driver, then you have to plan ahead and make sure you save some money for a cabride.

        Yes, anyone who drives drunk is an idiot. But for completely different reasons. If I had to choose the bigger idiot, for the reasons above, I would choose the rich person every day of the week.

  2. fanofevilempire - Jan 15, 2013 at 7:25 AM

    he is a drunkard.
    I guess the team has no worries about paying a drunkard who one day may kill
    innocent people, but hey, he is family!

  3. hotkarlsandwich - Jan 15, 2013 at 7:49 AM

    Dan McLaughlin of Cardinals TV on the other hand… http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com/dailyrft/2012/02/dan_mclaughlin_keeps_job_dui.php

  4. janknessgv - Jan 15, 2013 at 8:03 AM

    McLaughlin is employed by Foxsports Midwest. and does numerous other broadcast in addition to cardinals games.

  5. greymares - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:13 AM

    Harry Caray, Mel Allen, Harry Kalas seems like some of the very best were known as much for their drinking as well as their broadcasting.

    • albertmn - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:41 AM

      I don’t mind if they are known for their drinking, as long as they are not getting behind the wheel after they do it. Drink all you want. Just don’t drive in that condition and put other people’s lives at risk.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jan 15, 2013 at 10:59 AM

      No doubt Greymares!
      My Father used to tell the story of Dizzy Dean and Pee Wee Reese doing Cardinals broadcasts. When either of them asked for a hot dog it was code for “I need another PBR.”
      By the 7th inning both of them had consumed about (7 or 8) “hot dogs” a piece.

      • denny65 - Jan 15, 2013 at 10:45 PM

        Right. Sure thing. I’ve always believed your father’s stories.

  6. stex52 - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    He’s talking the talk. Maybe he has no choice now. But we can all hope he will walk the walk.

  7. 18thstreet - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    But … he had the most hits in the 1980s! Throw in his amazing post-season performance in 198, and he’s obviously a Hall of Famer.

  8. 18thstreet - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    But … he had the most hits in the 1980s! Throw in his amazing post-season performance in 1989, and he’s obviously a Hall of Famer.

    • historiophiliac - Jan 15, 2013 at 10:13 AM

      edit function!

  9. mybrunoblog - Jan 15, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    Refreshing to see that he is not blaming others for his alcohol abuse. That said, the guy is a mess and deserved to be fired.
    I wouldn’t want a 4 time DWI offender on my payroll either. Too big a liability.

  10. Minoring In Baseball - Jan 15, 2013 at 10:16 AM

    This surprised me, because he was one of the classiest players on the field. I hope he gets the help he needs, or just has the common sense not to drive after having a few. He was a very respected name in baseball, and he can stay that way if this ends now.
    -Mike
    http://minoringinbaseball.com/

  11. loslonelyman - Jan 15, 2013 at 10:27 AM

    I am not rich, but make about 25$ an hour. If I went out once or twice a month I usually pulled all nighters :-). I slipped 50$ in my shoe for cab fare. If I was truly being cheap, threw my keys under the spare tire in the trunk, and slept in the car. Amazing that these idiots, never considered these alternatives to bleary eyed mug shots on EVERY major paper and website. To give you an idea how much we drank lol here is a fun story. I bought a BAC breath tester from some website, after drinking for 8 hours we used it to see who could drive home. It read .28(must have hit the max reading) for all 7 of us, we all drunkenly said the thing sucks and is broken. We took a cab home, next AFTERNOON after brushing my teeth, i blew in it and it said .08. So seriously people that drink a lot, just give it up and GET HOME ANY WAY BUT DRIVING YOURSELF OR WITH DRUNK FRIENDS!

    • dondada10 - Jan 15, 2013 at 11:48 AM

      My college friend had a BAC breath tester, too.

      There was this girl who would always claim to be wasted, and then hook up with some random guy. My friend called her on it once, and had her blow into it. .03.

      What’s the point? I miss college.

  12. professormaddog31 - Jan 15, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    Gracie should have thought about his two little kids before he got behind the wheel of his car, drunk as a skunk. It’s sad that he has sunk this low.

  13. stabonerichard - Jan 15, 2013 at 12:59 PM

    Grace’s BAC was below 0.10 so he was driving around in a similar state to what thousands upon thousands of other people do every day in this country. Virtually every single one of us has been in a similar situation–a couple drinks with co-workers at happy hour, a couple glasses of wine at dinner, a few beers at the ballpark, etc.–and gotten behind the wheel after consuming alcohol. Obviously knowing the limit is critical, but anything below 0.10 is gonna be a gray area.

    So yes, Grace is an idiot whose actions demonstrated a lack of self control and/or intelligence (driving on a suspended license is what did him in; not erratic driving). He’ll have been hit with relatively steep fines, he’s lost his job/career for the time being, and been publicly humiliated. He’s a goofy bastard that poses more threat to himself than to society. If they end up placing him among the already overcrowded group of violent criminals and otherwise legitimate threats to society that we’re already stretch to find space for, it’ll be another whiff by the judicial system.

  14. anxovies - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:39 PM

    Craig, A lifetime .303 with 1174 RBI deserves some support from the teams that made money off of him. All of us make mistakes and most of us make the same mistakes over and over again, and those mistakes often hurt other people. Don’t throw somebody on the trash heap who is going to pay for his mistakes and is publicly admitting his faults and trying to do better. Our society has become so judgmental and hypocritical.

    • anxovies - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:41 PM

      Craig, after re-reading your article I realized that I was not responding to you, but to some of the people making comments here. You treated him fairly in your article.

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