Enough With the Early Retirement Announcements

Hey guys! I haven’t written a column in a while, and for that I apologize (kinda). The original column was called ‘Sports R Dumb,’ and focused primarily on things that made sports, well, dumb. We’re gonna get back to that, back to our roots.  

*Begin Rant*

David Ortiz announced that this will be his last season playing baseball, and that he will retire at the end of the year.  I hate when athletes do this, and it’s nothing short of an ego-stroke tour.

“Hey guys, look at all the great things I did for the game! You should acknowledge me because the multi-million dollar contracts, Hall of Fame induction and ceremony from my own fans (the ones I’ve played in front of for years) isn’t enough!” – Derek Jeter, Kobe Bryant and David Ortiz, probably.

I blame Jeter for this.  He was the first superstar athlete to announce to the world that we had six months to kiss his ass before he hung it up for good.  Don’t get me wrong, Jeter is a legend of the game, and will certainly be a first ballot Hall of Famer.  But do we really need all the pageantry? You didn’t play here for the Mariners, Jeter, so why the hell should I roll out the red carpet for you?

Then it was Kobe.  Now, knowing that Kobe was playing his last game last Wednesday definitely added to the excitement of him going off for 60 points, but did we really need to know the entire season? Tell us a month before the season ends, or if you really must, at the All-Star break.

It’s not like we’re a bunch of idiots, we can generally tell when an athlete is on the brink of retirement (Peyton Manning, anyone?). Nobody was shocked when Peyton hung it up.  Do you know why? Because we watched him play on the Goddamn field and went, “Man, you kind of suck now Peyton, think you’ll be retiring after this season?” “Well, you know we’ll see how I feel at the end.” Ok Peyton…Ok.  Everyone knew you were done, and that’s ok.

Why do you have to announce it, Ortiz? You think I’m going to clap for you when you hit like four homeruns at Safeco this summer just because it’s the last time I’ll see you play live? No, I wont do it.  And if I catch the ball I’m going to throw it back out of spite (ok, I’ll probably keep the ball, but that isn’t the point!)

Ortiz is almost certainly a Hall of Famer, and he did give me one of my favorite speeches by an athlete of all time (warning: video contains explicit language).  But C’mon dude.  Just go about your season, leave the unnecessary distractions out of it and hang it up at the end of the season.

Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobli both have player options on their contracts next year.  That means there is a chance that one or both will choose to retire whenever their season ends. My money says that at least one of them does, and they will do so without the victory lap that we’ve seen becoming so popular.

If you follow sports, you should have a general idea of when it might be your last chance to see an athlete play live. So buck up and go.  If they don’t retire, great! You can see them again next year! If they do retire then you got to see them one last time.  And if you just didn’t go, well then you have no one to blame but yourself.
For anyone who cares, the Boston Red Sox make their lone trip to Seattle Aug. 1-4.  So if you feel the need to participate in the “David Ortiz Jack-off Tour,” feel free. You know what I would rather do? I’d rather go on Aug. 5-7 when the Mariners will be retiring Griffey’s number.  You know, the guy that actually played for us.

*End Rant*