What better way to greet the new year than with the inaugural "Enemies of the Blog" list!
In reverse order, so as to create maximum suspense:
#5. Mookie Wilson. Three strikes against Mookie: 1.) Stupid nickname. Unforgiveable. 2.) Will forever be identified as a New York Met. Again, unforgiveable, and 3.) Just HAD to hit the groundball that dribbled between Bill Buckner's battle-ravaged legs, instantly turning a great player and outstanding former Cub into a punchline. I hope you can live with yourself, William Hayward Wilson.
#4. "walk-off homer," "front of the rotation," "middle of the rotation," "back of the rotation," "innings eater," "shut-down reliever," "manufacturing runs," et al. A whole new class of baseball cliches that have emerged in the age of ESPN's Baseball Tonight and spread faster than rumors about the details of Harold Reynolds' sexual harassment suit. In the old days, we had the "staff ace," "game-winning home run," and simply "reliever," and it was good enough for us. We liked it. We loved it.
#3. Wavin' Wendell Kim. Two years after the end of his murderous reign of terror in the third base coach's box, Cub fans are still haunted by the sight of The Hawaiian Windmill imploring Aramis Ramirez to race for the plate in his first game back after a severe groin injury. Dusty Baker did more imbecilic things than bring his old pal along from San Francisco to coach third...but not many.
#2. Jerry Reinsdorf. The combover-wearing, former shopping mall developer has quite a baseball resume. It includes blackmailing then-Illinois governor James Thompson into building the White Sox a free stadium and forcing the 1994 players strike. Reinsdorf has always reminded me of Mr. Potter from "It's A Wonderful Life." Only surlier.
And now, the #1 Enemy Of The Blog (at least for the time being)...
#1. Milo Hamilton. Hack play-by-play man who, while working in Atlanta, delivered the famously pedestrian call of Hank Aaron's 715th home run. Several years later, he joined the Cubs, aspiring to replace Jack Brickhouse as WGN's lead announcer, only to have his plans and entire sense of self upended by one Harry Caray. Seemingly growing more embittered by the year, Milo still works for the Houston Astros, which says a lot about the pool of broadcasting talent in Houston.