Atlanta Braves Team Picture 1980 Topps – Sully Baseball Card of the Day for November 27, 2017

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In the Christmas spirit and with the holidays upon us, let me send out this Yuletide Message.

FUCK BOBBY COX.

Fuck him in his fat ugly face. He is a piece of shit as a human being. I have no respect for him.

When that worthless pile of slug fecal matter mercifully leaves this world and goes into his rightful place of being an All You Can Eat Buffet for Worms, life will be a little bit better.

No, I have no reverence for him.

No, I have no respect for him.

No, I don’t see him as an ambassador of the game. Hell, I just declared his death will make the world a better place.

The legacy of Bobby Cox, who was the manager of the Braves back in 1980 when this card was issued, was cemented in 1995.

In most people’s eyes, that was cemented by his long awaited for World Series title. The Braves finally won it.

For me, that was when he fucking beat his wife. She called 911 that he hit her and pulled her hair and called her a bitch after spilling wine on the carpet.

Later, everything was dropped. She was red in the face from crying. It turns out he didn’t hit her, according to Pamela. It was all a big misunderstanding. And off we went to worshipping this vile bucket of piss.

Anyone who has studied domestic violence knows that fear from the victim causes them to reverse their story. Fear that the abuser will do more harm makes them back down. They are in a situation where they are afraid many times literally for their life. And if their abuser is a celebrity with people worshipping them, they know it will be even harder to get anyone to talk them seriously.

Best retreat. Anyway, as many abuse victims rationalize, it is partially “my fault anyway.”

And Bobby Cox got away with it. People don’t abuse their partners only once. And it isn’t “a mistake.”

It is an intentional crime to harm, control, belittle and dominate someone they profess to love.

The culture of celebrity, both in sports and entertainment, allows abusers to get away with so much because we do not want our heroes to be villains. O. J.’s abuse of Nicole was in the public record long before she was murdered. People spoke out for over a decade about Bill Cosby. We’ve known about Johnny Depp for a while.

But we love the Juice! We love Dr. Huxtable! We love Captain Jack Sparrow! They can’t be bad!

And in sports, the blind eye pointed towards domestic abusers and enabled them for decades. And Cox’s isn’t something we found out after the fact. We learned about it before the 1995 World Series.

Since then his number has been retired, his plaque is in the Hall of Fame, he had a farewell tour and standing ovations. His domestic abuse is an obscure footnote brushed away with “it was a misunderstanding.”

Bullshit.

There are some crimes of which there is no forgiveness. These are the crimes that cause irreversible harm to others. No amount of apologizing, repenting, asking for forgiveness nor good deeds performed can erase the effects of murder, rape, child abuse nor domestic abuse. Those are permanent scars. They can never be totally healed.

I have been vocal about my distain for domestic abusers in sports and a retort I have received from time to time is “Are you perfect?”

No. No I am not. I have made many mistakes. Some have even hurt my family. And I have done my best to ask for forgiveness and if I receive it, great and if I do not, then that will be my burden.

But I have never caused physical harm to someone I love. I have never raped, murdered, molested or committed battery to my wife. And so I have THAT over that decomposing rat anus also known as Bobby Cox.

So let me point this out. WHEN Bobby Cox dies, I will not include him in the In Memoriam montage I make every year. I will not honor him.

I wonder how many people who booed Bonds, Palmeiro, Clemens, Sosa, McGwire, Giambi, A-Rod, Ortiz, Ramirez and anyone else who did steroids also gave Bobby Cox a standing ovation.

If the number is more than one, then that is an illustration of the messed up priorities of sports fans.

So in review: Fuck Bobby Cox. He is a worthless pile of shit. The world will be better off when he is dead. Have a wonderful Holiday Season.

JERRY WILLARD – Sully Baseball Unsung Post Season Hero of October 23

Topps

Topps

OCTOBER 23, 1991 – World Series Game 4

The 1991 World Series looked like it was shaping up to be a thriller. Two teams that finished last the year before faced off. The Twins took the first two games but the Braves avoided any talk of a third straight 4 game sweep by taking a marathon 12 inning third game, the first World Series game ever played in Georgia.

Light hitting second baseman Mark Lemke continued his unlikely October heroics by driving in David Justice with 2 outs in the 12th for a 5-4 walk off win. Both the Twins and the Braves emptied their respective benches. Minnesota had to use reliever Rick Aguilera as a pinch hitter at one point.

If there was a Maytag Repairman for the game, it was Jerry Willard, the lone position player on either team who did not make it into the game.

The 31 year old catcher had bounced around between the Indians, A’s and White Sox along with many many minor league teams before landing with Atlanta in 1991 as their 5th string catcher. But an injury to Mike Heath and Damon Berryhill’s ineligibility for the post season roster opened up a spot for Willard. But save for one pinch hit appearance in the NLCS, he rode the pine.

In Game 4, Jack Morris and John Smoltz dueled but the bullpens were in control by the time the game was tied 2-2 in the bottom of the 9th.

Once again Lemke shone. With one out he tripled off of Twins reliever Mark Guthrie. After an intentional walk to Jeff Blauser, Atlanta manager Bobby Cox sent up Francisco Cabrera to pinch hit.

When Twins manager Tom Kelly countered with a double switch, bringing in the right handed Steve Bedrosian, Cox sent in Willard to bat for Cabrera (who would hit himself into post season lore with the 1992 Braves.)

Cox told Willard that he would probably be walked to set up a force at every base. But instead Bedrosian, a former Cy Young winning reliever, pitched to him. With the count 1-2, Willard lifted a flyball to shallow right field where it was caught by Shane Mack.

Lemke tagged and came home while Willard, out with the catch, watched from first base. The play was super close and there was contact between Lemke and Minnesota catcher Brian Harper. Lemke was called safe. Willard raised his hands in triumph as the Braves won.

Harper and Bedrosian argued with the umpires, claiming Lemke was out and the game should be going to the 10th. But replays showed that the contact was by Harper’s elbow and not the glove as Lemke slid around the tag.

Over and over they showed the replay with CBS announced Jack Buck and Tim McCarver breaking it down and praising the call by home plate umpire Terry Tata.

It was Lemke who was praised for the second straight night. He drove home the winning run of Game 3 and his slide won Game 4. The shot of Willard raising his arms in triumph was not shown live nor in the first few post games minutes. Willard was barely mentioned.

The Braves would lose Game 7 of the World Series in a heart breaking 1-0 fashion. Willard never appeared in the World Series again. Over the next three years he combined for 27 appearances with Montreal and Seattle before hanging up his spikes with Tacoma in 1995.

Today he works for a high school in southern California where he has fond memories of his playing days but can’t bring himself to watching the tapes of the World Series. His team lost.

But he did his part for Atlanta glory, earning him the title of  Unsung Postseason hero of October 23.

I could not find a quality video of his heroics. Here is a shaky cam YouTube clip of his sacrifice fly.