The Douchebaggery of Frank McCourt is staggering

It takes a special kind of a–hole to make the headline “Frank McCourt Looted The Dodgers” the SECOND most damning story of the day.
I understand that the Bryan Stowe case is sensitive and he needs an attorney to defend him and the Dodgers and he is already the bad guy in many people’s eyes.
But does he REALLY not have the PR savvy to know that sending a lawyer out to put blame on STOWE for his own beating is kind of sort of STAGGERINGLY AWFUL?
I guess it was the last stone unturned.
He made a mockery of the franchise, bankrupted one of the great teams in baseball history, took a major market club and turned them into the A’s…
And along the way the team handled the Stowe beating about as badly as possible.
I guess he thought “Oh what do we have to lose? Blame the victim!”
Some slippery lawyer came on 710 ESPN in Los Angeles to speak with Mason and Ireland and proceeded to talk about Stowe’s blood alcohol (because being drunk is grounds for being beaten into a coma). And at the same time kept saying “I don’t know if that’s true, but I heard it.”
Ah classy. Blame the victim with something LESS than facts.
And he claimed that security was already outstanding (then why did they bring in tons of police officers AFTER the beating.) And the idea that extra lights in the parking lots would have helped security was laughable. (Then why did they set up more lights.)
When you consider that Stowe was wearing a Giants jersey, I am stunned that he DIDN’T say “Look at what he was wearing!”
McCourt and his lawyer did all but bring John Steigerwald in as a character witness.
What the hell are they thinking?
Did McCourt think “Hey, there’s someone out there who still likes me… why don’t I piss them off too”?
Even if his lawyer thought they needed to have a strategy for the case, why make this public?
The lawyer on Mason and Ireland poo pooed any PR hit the Dodgers might get for blaming Stowe for his own beating.
“I’m not a PR man. I’m a lawyer.”
Then why the hell are you going to the airwaves? Why are you basically doing public relations for the Dodgers?
Short of McCourt beating up Bryan Stowe’s son with his bare hands, I can’t imagine any other way he could make his public image worse.

Follow sullybaseball on Twitter

I am going to get grief for my old camouflage post

To honor the brave soldiers who took out Bin Laden at his hideout Mansion in Pakistan, the San Diego Padres will wear their special camouflage uniforms.

Last year I wrote a blog post where I trashed the uniforms. I took great pains at the beginning of the article to make it clear that I understood they were honoring the military and that I knew the Padres do a lot for the many locals who are in the armed forces. I just thought the uniforms were ugly.

I still do.

But despite my preamble, I still got people writing to me saying “Don’t you understand that they are honoring the military?”

Yes. Yes I do.
I was considering taking down that post, but nope. It is up there.

I did go back and write a new disclaimer in bold and italics. I know it will be ignored.

If I take flak, I can handle it. I am not trying to pull a John Steigerwald and be the angry counter arguer.

I just think the uniforms are ugly.
But I am glad Bin Laden is gone. And the brave soldiers who took them out deserve our praise.

Now play ball.
Follow sullybaseball on Twitter

Stop falling into John Steigerwald’s trap!

On April 10th, no fewer than 10 of my readers and friends forwarded me an article written by someone named John Steigerwald (pictured above.)

He wrote a piece where he made fun of Bryan Stow for wearing a Giants jersey and had such wonderfully flip quotes as “if he ever comes out of his coma, why he thought it was a good idea to wear Giants’ gear to a Dodgers’ home opener” and vomited up his own takes on why grown men shouldn’t wear jerseys to a game.

And of course the gem that the Dodger fans were “protecting Dodger turf.

I read it several time, not believing what my eyes were registering. This a–hole was being serious.

This guy was at a newspaper! The Observer Reporter in somewhere called Washington, PA printed this. There was an editor named Chris Dugan who read this and said “OK, love it. Run with it.”

He wasn’t some 17 year old kid, scarfing down a Hot Pocket while typing it. He is a veteran sports anchor and writer from the Pittsburgh area scarfing down a Hot Pocket. (And one sporting a dynamite Anchorman stache in the process.)

So naturally I was angry when I read it. I wrote an angry comment along with the many other people who did the same.

The response was intense, so much so that he posted a response on his blog. It was unrepentant. He said he didn’t mean to insult the family and claimed he didn’t blame Bryan (even though he did over and over in his column) and basically felt we were all over reacting.

Oh dear how the internet exploded.

My pals at NBC Sports slammed him.
The good folks at SB Nation dug up old video of him wearing sports uniforms at an adult, the very thing he blamed Stow for.

He was slammed from New England at NESN to the Bay Area.

His stupid and horribly written article was linked from coast to coast. As was his middle finger response from his blog.

He went on TV to defend himself and he is part of the debate involving Bryan Stow.

And guess what folks?
Steigerwald won. Not to get all Admiral Ackbar on you, but it was a trap!
We did exactly what he wanted to do.

Let me ask you something. Before this week, did you have any idea who John Steigerwald was?

If you did, you are probably from the Pittsburgh area where you have some vague memory of him being a fired sports caster.

How often did you read the Observer-Reporter before this week? Did you even know where the hell Washington PA was?

A has-been anchor stuck writing for a suburban newspaper sees the sports landscape passing him by. So how does he inject life into his sports relevance?

By crafting well written articles that show he has a unique voice?

No. That would require ability.

Instead he saw a subject where there was national outrage and said “What if I took the other side?”

So he threw a Molotov Cocktail into the debate and hoped that we would all get upset… and pass around his article.

It has hundreds of thousands of hits now.

And he gets to portray himself as a sports guy who “Tells it how he sees it without worrying if it is politically correct.”

Even his blog proudly proclaims “No Punches pulled here!”

And the internet is so vast and wild that no doubt there are morons who agree with him who will now read his stuff thinking “Yeah! I think just like John Steigerwald!”

He posted on his blog a crocodile teared apology to his original non apology for the original article. (So now that will be three things passed around.) But no doubt he is chuckling during this whole thing as are the editors of the Observer-Reporter who love the increased traffic and their new found star.

In fact he has made jokes about the whole controversy on his blog. Very contrite guy.

Actually in his bogus “Sorry that everyone thought I blamed the guy” post he made a very interesting claim.

“Do you know how many angry phone calls the Washington Observer-Reporter received on Sunday and Monday after the column appeared in Sunday‚Äôs paper?

None.”

Um… I called. And I know at least three other people who did as well. So that statement is a lie. I would comment on that, but he has disabled comments.

Nothing says “Pulling No Punches” like lying to save face and not allowing people to call out the B.S.

And Steigerwald has a book available on line for purchase. No doubt it is a literary masterpiece and he will sell a few more copies of it based on this fiasco.

Stop clicking on his stuff folks. You will notice I put no links to his articles on this post. The internet should be a great fun and slightly insane place for people of all opinions to be heard. But we shouldn’t reward people who are causing trouble just for the sake of causing trouble.

Now I have been known to pick a few fights and write an inflammatory blog post from time to time.

Calling opponents of Instant Replay “idiots” comes to mind.

But there is a difference.

Instant Replay is about the game and whether or not Armando Gallaraga got a perfect game.

Nobody goes into a coma on the wrong side of this debate.

Nobody’s struggle for life is belittled in this debate.

Let’s not reward those who step over the line of decency. He has the right to say whatever he says, of course. But that doesn’t mean he should get any more fame than he already has. It was a calculated and rotten move that he made.

Now I can curse the darkness, but I’d rather light a candle.

Obviously the Observer-Reporter needs to decent baseball columnist. I would nominate myself for the job, but there should be someone who has Pittsburgh area ties writing there.

Pat Lackey has brought the goods for years at Where Have You Gone Andy Van Slyke? Put him on the payroll.

Carson and Corey at We Should Be GMs cover Philadelphia and Pittsburgh sports and they do a great job.

Dave Harrison at Bucs Trade Winds is always entertaining as are the good folks at Raise the Jolly Roger.

Comedian Joel Solomon is a lifelong Pirates fan and super clever. Give him a shot.

Contact Chris Dugan, the Sports Editor of the Observer-Reporter.
His e mail is dugan@observer-reporter.com and let him know that there are better writers out there who will contribute good solid material without dipping to Steigerwald’s level.

And for the rest of you, don’t go to his site nor forward his stuff.
He had his shot for relevance and he decided to belittle a man in a coma.

Let’s move on and play ball.

<img src="http://twitter-badges.s3.amazonaws.com/follow_me-c.png" alt="Follow sullybaseball on Twitter”>