You’ll recall, if you pay attention to the important things in life, anyway, that last July Anna Benson, the ex-wife of former MLB pitcher Kris Benson burst into his house with a gun, a knife, a metal baton and a bullet-proof vest, smashed a computer and demanded $30,000. That’s illegal, even in Georgia, so she went to jail.
She’s out now, and she’s talking to the press. While it wouldn’t take much to be better off now than she was last July, know that Ms. Benson is feeling better. She gave an exclusive interview to Fox 411 and talked about life back on the outside:
“I don’t smoke pot. I don’t drink. I even quit smoking,” Benson told FOX411 exclusively. “And I tell you what, I’ve never felt better.”
The former star of VH1’s “Baseball Wives,” who once infamously declared that she would sleep with the entire New York Mets organization if she ever caught her husband cheating on her, declared that she’s happier now than she’s ever been.
“Everything is great,” said Benson. “I’m happy with the simplest things. I bought a flower today at the grocery store– an orchid– and it’s so pretty and I appreciate it so much, because I remember being in jail and not having anything–nothing that smelled good, no music, no nothing–and I’m just thrilled to be in this small apartment, living a normal life.”
Eschewing all the easy punchlines, let’s be clear about something: Anna Benson had/has some pretty serious psychological problems, no doubt caused and/or exacerbated by a crazy/crappy upbringing and some poor life choices. None of that excuses her behavior last year, of course, but in the public eye she has spent her time as either a sex symbol or a joke to most people. It’s good to remember that she’s a real person who has kids and stuff and it’s good to see her figuring some things out and hopefully rebuilding her life.
We wrote a lot about Casey Kelly on this site circa 2010-12.
It was understandable. Kelly was a big-time draftee for the Red Sox and famously split time as a shortstop and a pitcher in the minors, with some people even wondering if he could do it full time. The Sox put the kibosh on that pretty quickly, as he became the top overall prospect in the Boston organization as a pitcher. He then made news when he was sent to San Diego — along with Anthony Rizzo — in the famous Adrian Gonzalez trade in December 2010.
He made his big league debut for the Padres in late August of 2012, holding a pretty darn good Atlanta Braves team scoreless for six innings, striking out four. He would pitch in five more games in the season’s final month to not very good results but missed all of 2013 and most of 2014 thanks to Tommy John surgery.
He wouldn’t make it back to the bigs until 2015 — pitching only three games after being converted to a reliever — before the Padres cut him loose, trading him to the Braves for Christian Bethancourt who, like a younger Kelly, the Padres thought could be a two-way player, catching and relieving. That didn’t work for him either, but I digress.
Kelly made a career-high ten appearances for a bad Braves team in 2016, was let go following the season and was out of the majors again in 2017 after the Cubs released him a couple of months after he failed to make the team out of spring training. He resurfaced with the Giants this past season for seven appearances. The Giants cut him loose last month.
Now Kelly’s journey takes him across the ocean. He announced on Instagram last night that he’s signed with the LG Twins in the Korean Baseball Organization. He seems pretty happy and eager about it in his little video there. I don’t blame him, as he’ll make $1 million for them, as opposed to staying here and almost certainly winding up in a Triple-A rotation making $60K or whatever it is veteran minor leaguers make.
This was probably way too many words to devote to a journeyman heading to play in Korea, but we so often forget top prospects once they fail to meet expectations. We also tend to forget all of the Tommy John casualties, focusing instead on the Tommy John successes. As such, I wanted to think a bit about Casey Kelly. I hope things work out well for him in the KBO and a baseball player who once seemed so promising can, after a delay, find success of his own.