200 Miles From the Citi

July 27, 2010 2:31 PM

It's All Fun And Games Until Someone Tears Their Meniscus


Maybe I'm just a stick in the mud.

Maybe I'm just way too cautious.

Maybe I'm not a "guy's guy".

But I've been turned off of these walk-off celebrations for a long time...and the most recent news just makes me hate them even more.

A guy wins the game for your team, so you punch him in the gut as he touches home plate?  Literally pound him on the back?

Sneak around and wait until he's talking to the media and then stick him with a face full of shaving cream?  Rub it in so that he has to swallow it?  (The Mets are as guilty in all of this as anyone else, I'm well aware.  But at least once in a while they mix in some whipped cream.)

The latest injury happened on Sunday, shortly after the at-plate celebration following Wes Helms's walk-off hit when the Marlins beat the Braves.  Chris Coghlan was the man delivering the pie-in-the-face to Helms, and as he did it, he tore the meniscus in his knee.  He might need surgery, but he definitely is going to the disabled list.

Manager Edwin Rodriguez says there will be no more such celebrations for the Marlins. No kidding.

It's only a matter of time before one of these ballplayers - the same stock of guys who have DL stints for sneezing the wrong way - end up on the DL with 'soapy eyes' because of the shaving cream pies...or bruised kidneys because they hit a home run in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Worse still, I'm sure it's only a matter of time before it happens to one of the Mets.  (Of course, a small thing called 'winning a game' may get in the way of that ever happening to the Mets.)

It reminds me of these guys I saw in Seattle who were playing the classic end-of-inning game from the stands, "Will the ball roll off the mound?"  In addition to the money exchanging hands at the end of a half-inning, the guys would occasionally deliver a hard punch to one another to punctuate their win.  They probably thought they looked cool.  They looked like idiots.  Same with the pros' celebrations.

So let's everyone follow Edwin Rodriguez's lead and lay off the violent celebrations.  Fool me once (Kendry Morales), shame on you.  Fool me twice (Chris Coghlan), shame on me.

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