No, not the brawl. That was one of the highlights of this dismal baseball seasons. The unfortunate part of the ordeal occurred when A.J. Pierzynski and Michael Barrett shook hands, exchanged pleasantries and put the whole incident behind them over the long holiday weekend.
Who needs something like that?
Certainly not baseball. The sport could use some more anxiety along with threats of brawls and bean balls. Baseball has recently been watered down to rivalries not decided by uniforms or cities, but by the sports agent who represents you. Players are playing for their contract years instead of a chance for a pennant. Nobody wants to get dirty and play baseball like it is supposed to be played—with hate.
Say what you want about Roger Clemens, but he is a guy who gets this. The guy threw the ball at his own son for showing him up during spring training. This was a guy who applies lineament to his groing so he doesn't get comfortable on the mound. This is a guy who plays with fire (and a deep, almost disturbing love for Andy Pettitte.)
That is what sports needs. Not guys making nice. Guys who take exception and get a little agitated once in while. At least make the home crowd believe that the players actually care about winning. That the players hate the same players as you. That is what Barrett did when he decked that a-hole. Cubs fans were able to live vicariously through Barrett for a moment. (At least they had that going for them.)
A Cubs and White Sox match-up is compelling if you think that the bean balls are on the verge of happening. Otherwise it's the defending champions beating on a perennial bottom feeder. Baseball needs more drama. To use a wrestling term, baseball needs a team that actually draws heat from the fans. Instead, baseball has a bunch of Lance Storms running around when the league needs more Ric Flairs.
Now that Pierzynski and Barrett have made up, the only drama in baseball revolves around steroids and Ozzie Guillen calling a reporter names. Geez, no wonder baseball seems so lame to the younger set. The only bright spot is that Pierzynski is such a dick; he’s liable to piss somebody else off.
Baseball fans can only hope.