Sunday, May 13, 2012

Hero/ Zero of the Week

Deciding this week's Zero at Into The Stands was a difficult task. I was torn in two directions by equally disturbing displays of poor sportsmanship.
I decided not to choose Our Lady of Sorrows as this week's Zero, because, despite their flawed belief system, it is still a belief system. I don't want to label that, but I will call it out.
Our Lady Sorrows baseball team forfeited a championship game because their opposing team, Mesa Preparatory Academy, consisted of a 15 year old girl at second base. It is not that Our Lady Sorrows believed they were going to get cooties (they are 15, not five), or injure the girl (baseball isn't a contact sport); rather, they believe a woman's place is not on the field (really? with the 40th anniversary of Title IX right on the horizon?).
My response would never be as good as that of Nancy Hogshead-Makar, senior director of advocacy Women's Sports Foundation, who said: "In real life, these boys are going to be competing against the girls for jobs, for positions in graduate programs or in trade schools. In every other area of their life, they are going to be competing side by side."

This week's Zero:

Josh Beckett 

Getty Images
It is hard to ignore the attitude of this guy. 
Missing a start... acceptable. Golfing on your day off... acceptable. Have a bad outing... sucks, but is also acceptable. Mouthing off to the, it happens.
However, the combination of all four of these misnomers equals a big, fat goose egg for the Red Sox's pitcher Josh Beckett.   
Beckett is so cocky, so irresponsible, so entitled, that I can't even look at him and that weird patch of hair on his chin.
My words of advice here are for the Red Sox organization. They are one of the strongest organizations in MLB, and that is by no coincidence. They have pushed so many of the right buttons. Loved by lots, hated by lots, respected by more, they have always worked diligently to remain PR conscious, and have built a solid brand. 
So now, here is the tough part to swallow... Josh Becket is spoiling your brand. Doesn't matter how good he is. The beer drinking, fried chicken eating, egomaniac is spoiling your brand, John Henry. 
Show him the door, and never look back. 
Cole Hamels is a free agent at the end of this season.  

This week's Hero:

Rick Hendrick

Jimmie Johnson may have won the race at Darlington on Saturday, but Rick Hendrick was the winner at the end of this race. 
The Southern 500 win marked Hendrick's 200th NASCAR Sprint Cup victory as a team owner, a win his drivers and teams have been vying for since the 199th win last October. 
Hendrick won his first race as an owner at Martinsville in 1984. 
His continued impact on stock car racing is apparent and longstanding. With drivers such as Johnson, Kahne, Gordon, Earnhardt Jr, Hendrick can now set his sights on 250 wins.  

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