A thorn by any other name is Cleveland sports

Isn’t it a wonderful time to be a Cleveland sports fan? Think about it: The Tribe is at or near the top of their division, the Cavs managed to obtain the first pick in the draft lottery, and the Browns, well, let’s just say the Browns are undefeated so far in the 2013 season.

Doesn’t it make you wish there was some way we could just sort of freeze time for about six months and simply bask in the relative glory of our beloved sports teams before, you know, it all goes "poof"? Otherwise – in reality – don’t you envision that a few months from now, we’ll all be lamenting what we know to be inevitable? Stuff like the fact that the Browns quarterbacks will have played so poorly in training camp that Coach Chudzinski had no choice but to announce a "three man rotation" for the 2013 season. Or that the Cavs burned their first round pick on a 7’4”, 150-pound string-bean center from Appalachian State, with Chris Grant stating that he “liked the kid’s upside.” (In a related development, fans want to smack Cavs GM Chris Grant "upside" the head after the pick is revealed).

Or, that after a short stretch of pitching relatively well (it’s his option year, remember), Ubaldo Jimenez went back to pitching like Ubaldo, Brett Myers came off the disabled list and continued pitching like, well, Brett Myers, and Scott Kazmir had reminded us why he was pitching in the low minors only a year ago.

All of which leads me to my next point: What is it about the Indians that makes them think they can take someone else’s rejects and turn them around in Cleveland? Remember Fausto Carmona? The Tribe signed him to a huge contract after he had a terrific year in 2007, then they spent the next five years trying to get him to pitch like that again – with only marginal success. Come to think of it, that shouldn’t surprise anyone because heck, it took ‘em five years just to get his NAME right, didn't it?

To paraphrase that famous pitching coach of the Lord Chamberlain’s Men company of theatrical and – I’m almost positive – baseball players, Billy Shakespeare: “A thorn by any other name is still a thorn.” Think about it: half a millennium ago, this guy had sports figured out. I mean Fausto may have become Roberto, but he was still Fausto, capice? You were ahead of your time, Billy.

Now they’re on the very same merry-go-round with Ubaldo Jimenez. The problem is, this particular ride will cost the Dolans $8 million in 2014,  and we all know who pays when they sign a thorn to a huge contract and he becomes a bust. The Dolans don’t pay, baby, we do, and I’m still rubbing calamine lotion on the welts left by the Hafner, Carmona and Sizemore contracts. No mas.

Lastly, has anyone else noticed how Jimmy Haslam had a minority stake in the Pittsburgh Steelers for five whole years – with nary a problem – yet less than a year after buying the Browns, he somehow morphs into Baby Face Nelson?

Oh well ... what's in a name?

Jeff Bing

Lifelong Westlake resident who dabbles in writing whenever the real world permits. My forte is humor and horror...What a combo!

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Volume 5, Issue 11, Posted 9:48 AM, 05.29.2013