Indeed Ozzie Guillen is a bad little boy, and what he called Jay Mariotti was wrong, but why hasn’t anyone else noticed that Guillen’s first shot at an “apology” was easily the (albeit paraphrased) quote of the year thus far:
Guillen also told (writer Greg) Couch that he has *** friends, attends WNBA games, went to a Madonna concert and plans to go to the *** Games in Chicago.
Hello? Ozzie refers to a sports columnist as a euphemism for a bundle of sticks, and then says it’s ok because he follows the WNBA? I’d like to see David Stern try to market his floundering league with a beauty like this:
The WNBA: Ozzie Guillen says we’re as *** as Madonna!
Count me in.
In all seriousness, Ozzie issued an apology (as he should have), but this event has simply highlighted why a lot of sports columnists should simply do their job and stay out of the story. All Mariotti had to do was note that Ozzie said what he said and now it’s for the league to deal with. End of story.
Mariotti wrote a column today in which he says “I am not the story here,” and then proceeds to explain that he couldn’t talk to Guillen man-to-man because, “Tuesday night, I was at Game 6 of the NBA Finals, where I should have been. Next week, I’ll be at the NBA draft. Next month, I’ll be at the British Open.”
Right, Jay. It’s definitely not about you. And if you’ve never used an unflattering term to describe someone who enjoys the company of a same-sex patrner, I’ll, um, how to put this in an MLB-friendly manner…perform a certain sex act on you.
Really? Isn’t that like your landlord saying “I demand $200 more a month, and if you don’t give it to me, you’ll never see me again?”
Which begs the question: Why would the White Sox want a self-serving columnist to keep coming to their locker room?
My favorite sports writer is ESPN’s Buster Olney, who’s book The Last Night of the Yankee Dynasty, clearly uses first person interviews, but it’s not written like he’s the star. Olney never – or at the very least, rarely – places himself inside the story, and the book is a phenomenal read (despite being about the Yankees).
My least favorite sports writer is the Boston Globe’s Dan Shaughnessy, who can’t possibly fathom why people don’t want to read about him. In Reversing the Curse, his book about the 2004 Red Sox, Shaughnessy actually takes partial credit for the Sox winning the World Series, noting that they went on a major winning streak after he told Jason Varitek that the team was “underachieving.” The book has the word “I” in it about 1,098,236 times, and is a real chore to read (despite being about the Red Sox).
So yes, Guillen should – and apparently will – be suspended, but if Jay Mariotti really didn’t want to be “part of the story,” he should have written about something else. Like how the White Sox scored 33 runs off the Cardinals the last two nights, or how the Cubs got to C. C. Sabathia, or how Dwayne Wade reminds him of Michael Jordan, or ANYTHING BUT THE ONE STORY THAT DIRECTLY INVOLVES HIM!
I think ODB put it best when he said, “N—a please.”
Expect a full explanation of, and apology for, the previous phrase sometime soon. Not that it’s about me or anything.