LADY AT THE BAT: A Few Words About Knoblauch

Friday, January 11, 2008

A Few Words About Knoblauch

Chuck Knoblauch finally surfaced yesterday, weeks after his name showed up in The Mitchell Report. He told The New York Times "I have nothing to defend. I have nothing to hide at the same time." In other words, no contest.

Knoblauch's tenure with the Yankees was never what he or anyone else expected it to be. I'm sure a lot of it had to do with the fact that his father was dying of Alzheimer's Disease. I once heard MSNBC's Keith Olberman (whose mother was the victim of one of Knoblauch's errant throws) talking about how a lot of players practically lose the ability to play when the person that first taught them the game (in most cases, the father) is taken away from them.

Before those abilities left him, Yankee fans witnessed a lead-off hitter who, all of a sudden, began leading off games with home-runs. (Yankee announcer John Sterling once remarked, "Torre better like it," after one of Chuck's jacks.) He was no longer the tough out he was with the Minnesota Twins. He no longer took pitches and always seemed either to hit the ball out of the park or ground out. At the same time, we were bombarded with tales of how much of a health nut Knoblauch was. We were told that he would never put anything unnatural or unhealthful in his body and that he was embarrassed to be caught with even so much as a small bag of pretzels.

What's the truth? Did he take steroids and, as a result, hit more home-runs? Or, was he really the health nut everyone believed he was? Knoblauch is pleading no contest now. We'll see if that changes on February 13th.

The Lady

1 comment:

Sherpa said...

I feel a little melancholy about this. I liked Chuck.