In September, you're a diehard Yankees fan embarrassed about tossing a poor first pitch in your effort to fulfill a lifelong dream. In August, you can't pronounce "Isiah Kiner-Falefa". One of these things is not like the other.
In an almost hilarious bout of timing (purposefully set up for virality?), ESPN's loudest man Stephen A. Smith announced on Thursday that he'd be throwing out the first pitch at Yankee Stadium before the team's finale against the Blue Jays.
Just 24 hours prior, he'd been locked in a screaming match with YouTube baseball ambassador "Fuzzy," in which he directed the content creator -- and the entire baseball community -- to "shut the hell up". This time, the verbal sparring was in response to SAS claiming Shohei Ohtani's UCL injury will compromise him in the field (he doesn't play the field), as well as asserting that he's not worth his incoming $500 million because he doesn't sell tickets (he does, and he probably is).
Of course ... of course ... the only thing that could happen next was Stephen A. toeing the rubber at Yankee Stadium and ... looking compromised in the field.
This pitch might be worst than 50 Cent's, which is coincidentally also the same amount of money I'd pay for a Stephen A. baseball take.
Yankees mound 1, Stephen A. Smith 0 in first pitch attempt
Somehow, the pitch looked even worse from Ballpark Cam in dead center field, considering the shot lingered on Smith long after the ball doinked against the turf. Yup. It kept rolling for all the boos.
Did Stephen A. deserve a torrent of boos after showing his bald spot, re: Ohtani? Eh, maybe. Probably not.
But did he deserve to get rocked by Hall of Famer Vladimir Guerrero in an excellent edit? Absolutely.
To Stephen A.'s credit, he eventually joined the YES Network booth and admitted he was "disgusted" with his own right arm for betraying him, right at the moment of truth.
It's a tough one. He took his time. He rocked. He gathered. He fired. And then he just didn't have it. Happens to the best of us, and also Kei Igawa.
Chin up, Stephen A. Tomorrow, Fuzzy and Co. will continue being internet chirpers, and you'll be on (checks TV Guide) every single show airing on both ESPN and ESPN2 between the hours of 8:00 AM and 6:00 PM.
But next time, if you're going to chat MLB free agency, a cursory Google would be nice. Open invite if you'd like to stop by The Baseball Insiders and talk shop.