April 16, 2008
It's official. According to the Chicago Tribune's Hardball, Alfonso Soriano and his .175 batting average have been placed on the Cubs' 15-day disabled list after straining his right calf. The injury happened right after Soriano landed from the "bunny hop" he habitually performs while catching fly balls.
Soriano is denying his injury came as a result of the hop, but his hare-brained (literally) ways would seem to qualify the Chicago left fielder for one of the rarer groups in all of sports: Athletes who have unnecessarily injured themselves on the field or court in the strangest and stupidest way possible.
Yes, Soriano might now deserve a place among the not-very-illustrious list I've compiled below ... Where does he belong?
5. Vince Coleman (MLB) — OK, so the inattentive crew at old Busch Stadium contributed just as much in knocking the noted firecracker enthusiast out of the 1985 NLCS. But doesn't the first lesson of baseball come in knowing to never, ever turn your back on the metal tarp cylinder? Those suckers can be very sneaky.
4. Tony Allen (NBA) — Remember the days when a Celtic would go up for an unnecessary monster dunk after the whistle and come down with a season-ending knee injury? Tony Allen sure does.
3. Bill Gramatica (NFL) — Without good ol' Bill, we'd never know that the proper way to celebrate giving your team a 3-0 lead is to tear your ACL and just end your season right then and there.
2. Milton Bradley (MLB)— No, Milton, San Diego won't need you down the '07 stretch while trying to hold off the Rockies. So feel free to go ahead to sacrifice your ACL while being restrained from going after umpire Mike Winters. Really no problem at all, Milton. Get your angry on.
(Update: A great e-mail from Bryant notes: "What you forgot to mention was that only an inning prior to the Bradley/Winters altercation Bradley had the foresight to stomp on Mike Cameron's hand while chasing a ball into the gap. This knocked Cameron out of the game and effectively ended his season as well. The biggest piece of irony to this story – this game ended up being a 7-3 loss. To the Rockies.")
1. Gus Frerotte (NFL)— Fifty years from now, the lasting memory of Goofy Gus won't be that he was fr'real or that he played (poorly) for seven different NFL teams. It'll come in that he knocked his own ass out in the same game that Michael Westbrook decided he was morally opposed to helmets and would prefer MMA in the future instead.
So no matter that the presciently wise Frank Robinson used to tell Soriano not to do that silly hop, Mr. I-Only-Bat-Leadoff has now entered the most hallowed of (hospital) halls where the only person to blame is one's self (or the Busch Stadium grounds crew.)