In other news, out-of-jurisdiction, off-duty cops were allowed to bring their guns into Turner Field before now:
The Atlanta Braves will no longer allow some off-duty police officers to carry guns at Turner Field, which has prompted objections. Under the team’s new policy, off-duty officers from jurisdictions that don’t include Turner Field will no longer be allowed to bring firearms into the stadium.
Tyrone Police Chief Brandon Perkins tells WSB-TV that the policy change will make the ball games less safe, adding that “armed good guys stop armed bad guys.”
If you’re an off-duty cop from Atlanta or the Fulton County Sheriffs Department, you can still bring your weapon. It’s only the guys from out of town, who are not even in a jurisdiction in which they can reasonably be expected to be called into action, who can’t bring them in anymore.
Beginning in 2015 all major league ballparks will have metal detectors. Every park has security and police present on-site. Reggie Jackson has long been retired. To my knowledge, there has never been an incident in which a fan was required to use a firearm to protect other fans from violence or crime inside a stadium (if I’m wrong about that, please let me know).
The upshot: relying on a police officer who has traveled from wherever he lives for a night of leisure at the ballpark to spring into action may not be quite the pressing issue Chief Perkins makes it out to be. But I’m sure some of you will tell me how I’m wrong about that.
*Note: the pic is Glen Ford shooting the psycho on the field in Candlestick Park in the awesome movie “Experiment in Terror.” Ford played a San Francisco cop, so he was still in his bailiwick.
1B/DH Edwin Encarnacion signed a three-year, $60 million contract with the Indians early last month. The 34-year-old had spent the last seven and a half seasons with the Blue Jays, but his future elsewhere appeared to be written on the wall when the Jays signed Kendrys Morales in November to essentially occupy Encarnacion’s role.
Encarnacion spoke about testing free agency for the first time in his career and the situation that led to him leaving Toronto for Cleveland. Via Jorge L. Ortiz of USA TODAY:
“Toronto was always my first option, but I had never been a free agent, and anybody who gets to free agency wants to find out what’s out there,’’ he said. “I think they got too hasty in making their decision, but now I’m with Cleveland and I’m happy to be here.’’
Encarnacion last season hit .263/.357/.529 with 42 home runs and an AL-best 127 RBI. He’s now on the team that defeated his Blue Jays in the ALCS to advance to the World Series. Encarnacion effectively replaces Mike Napoli, who returned to the Rangers.
I’m on record saying that Sammy Sosa has been rather hosed by baseball history.
The guy did amazing things. Unheard-of things. He was truly astounding at this peak and was incredibly important to both his franchise and Major League Baseball as a whole. His repayment: he’s a pariah. His club won’t claim him and his greatness, by any measure, has not just been overlooked but denied by most who even bother to consider him.
Yes, he had PED associations, but they were extraordinarily vague ones. He’s in the same boat as David Ortiz as far as documented PED evidence against him, but Ortiz will be a first ballot Hall of Famer while Sosa barely clings to the ballot. He hit homers at the same cartoonish rate as Mark McGwire, but while Big Mac has been embraced by baseball and has coached for years, Sosa can’t get into Wrigley Field unless he buys a ticket and even then the Cubs might try to hustle him out of sight. The man has been treated poorly by any measure.
Yet, it’s still possible to overstate the case. Like Sosa did in this interview with Chuck Wasserstrom:
It’s like Jesus Christ when he came to Jerusalem,” Sosa told chuckbloggerstrom.com. “Everybody thought Jesus Christ was a witch (laughing) — and he was our savior. So if they talk (bleep) about Jesus Christ, what about me? Are you kidding me?”
At least he was basically joking about it. Still, it’s a totally unfair and almost offensive comparison.
I mean, anyone who watched Sosa’s career knows that he had trouble laying off breaking stuff low and away. In contrast . . .