Baseball groupies to get their own TV show

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“There’s never been a ballplayer slept with me who didn’t have the best year of his career. Making love is like hitting a baseball: you just gotta relax and concentrate. Besides, I’d never sleep with a player hitting under .250.”
— Annie Savoy

Who can forget everyone’s favorite baseball groupie, Susan Sarandon’s Annie Savoy, from the 1988 baseball classic “Bull Durham”?

Well now the groupies are going to have their own television show, and casting is already taking place. From Radaronline:

The show has the working title of Cleat Chasers and casting is in full swing by Get Some Media. A source familiar with the production told us it will feature women who know every trick to score with the pros.

“It’s a reality show about girls who stop at nothing to score with athletes while they are away from their wives and girlfriends during baseball spring training,” a source close to casting told RadarOnline.com exclusively. “It’s about girls that have gone pro in the sport of ‘cleat chasing.'”

The show will likely be held in Scottsdale, Ariz., where the World Champion San Francisco Giants train, though there are a host of other teams nearby.

I actually find the whole psychology of groupies and why they act the way they do as a potentially interesting story. Something tells me, however, that this show won’t get too terribly deep, and will aim more to attract viewers with the promise of naming famous players and sharing sordid tales of their exploits.

Stay tuned … or don’t.

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Tommy La Stella talks about his refusal to report to the minors in 2016

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In late July of 2016, Cubs infielder Tommy La Stella was demoted to Triple-A. It wasn’t personal. It was a roster crunch situation and La Stella had options left so, despite the fact that he had been an effective player to that point of the season, it made sense to send him down.

La Stella didn’t take the demotion well. In fact he refused to report to Iowa and went home to New Jersey instead. It was not until August 17 that he finally reported and then only after prolonged discussions with the Cubs and the assurance that he’d be back in the majors once rosters opened up. Which he was, after spending just over a week down on the farm.

Such a move by a player would, normally speaking, make him persona non-grata. His teammates would shun him and the organization would, eventually, cut bait, with the press characterizing him as a me-first player as he walked out the door. That did not happen with La Stella, however, who remains with the Cubs two years later and, by all accounts, is a popular and important guy in the Cubs’ clubhouse, even if he’s not one of the team’s big stars.

Today Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic has an in-depth story about La Stella, what went down in 2016 and how he and the Cubs have proceeded since then. The story is subscription only, but the short version is that there was a lot of understanding and empathy on the part of the Cubs organization and their players about what was going on in La Stella’s head at the time and how everyone allowed everyone else the space to work through it.

I’m happy to read this story, because all too often we only hear about such incidents as they occur, with little followup. To the extent the story is told, most of the time its completely one-sided, with the player who acts out being treated like a bad seed with little if any explanation of his side of things. And, yes, there are always two sides to the story. Sometimes even more.

Kudos to Rosenthal for telling this story. Here’s hoping the next time a player is involved in a controversy that, in the moment, makes him appear to be a bad seed or have a bad attitude, we hear more about it then too.