Many sites have power rankings, but Naughty Baseball’s are a little different. Here, players aren’t ranked on ability, maturity, or clutch hitting. Instead, these rankings are completely subjective, based on how “cool” I think a player is. What does “cool” mean? It certainly isn’t part of the proper journalistic creed. For our purposes, players both past and present can make the rankings as well. All that matters is if you're making headlines for one reason or another. Basically, if a player's antics make me chuckle, they make the Naughty Rankings.
8. Adam Dunn
On opening day Adam Dunn was found making outfield blunders at 2:21 PM, 4:04 PM, and again, at 4:16 PM. It seems that even this diehard Dunn fan blogging on redlegnation was running out of excuses for him. But what did Dunn say after the game,
“It's one game…Just because it's Opening Day doesn't mean it's the seventh game of the World Series. It's one game. If you want to say we'll stink it up because we lost one game, go ahead. This isn't ruining my season. I promise you."
Dunn is honest, and honesty is a virtue. He didn’t blame the winds for the foul balls he missed and loves thin mints: “These are thin mints. I put them in the freezer. My favorites. So good.” Dunn on the Reds new cheerleaders: “It gets the fans into (the game) and gives us something to look at.” Like I said, honest, a man of integrity.
7. Jason Giambi
On Dec. 11th of 2003 Giambi admitted to using steroids in front of a federal grand jury. His 2003 line: .250/.412/.527, including 41 jacks. After admitting to steroid use an injury plagued 2004, led to a .208/.342/.379 line, with 12 measly homers. It seems Giambi cleaned out his system, and all his muscle. If you saw Giambi in 2004, you could see his new slimmer look. Yet, he had a power resurgence in 2005 with 32 home runs in 139 games—back to his old self, including the weight. (**wink wink**) Now, I’m not going to sit here and say Giambi is back on the juice, but if anyone has the balls to admit to doing a plethora of steroids, and then do them again, they’re worthy of these here Naughty Rankings.
6. Eric Byrnes
For one thing, anybody who has a website made for them, by someone else they don’t know, must be pretty cool, right? Hmm…this is questionable logic--it sounds like the chick who made this site is just plain crazy. She has this to say about Burns, “I made an Eric Byrnes web site because he's a great ballplayer, exciting to watch, hard-working, has a positive attitude about pretty much everything, and is a great all-around guy. You've just got to respect a guy who plays all out, all the time and looks like he's having a great time doing it. I also love the high socks.” She also says she is confident that Burns will never be caught doing anything like drugs or alcohol, much to my chagrin. Well, Eric certainly didn’t make my power rankings because he wears high socks. He’s made it for one reason and one reason only—he hired one of his best friends from college (UCLA) to be his agent. Enjoy your days on this list Eric, cause they’re numbered.
PS: Burns also has an official website for you diehard fans: http://www.byrnesie.com.
5. Pedro Martinez
On April 7th Pedro hit Jose Guillen not once, but twice. Pedro never admitted he did it intentionally, but Guillen’s .419 career batting average against Pedro makes me (and the rest of the known world) beg to differ. Pedro-1, Guillen-0. A week later, on April 12th, Guillen grounded into a double play with the bases loaded and two out against Martinez. The Mets went on to win that one as well. After the game Pedro had this to say about Guillen: “It could happen in any game, but you know what? I don't hold any grudges…He's probably bitter still, but I'm just going to continue to pray for him, and hopefully it will get better, his temper will change. I still have respect for his bat, he's a good hitter and I'm just going to continue to do what I have to do. And I was glad that, when I'm OK, I don't need to hit anybody." Martinez-2, Guillen-0. I can’t imagine anything more annoying than hearing from the guy who hit you twice in one game that he’s praying your temper will change. HA. You go Pedro.
4. Mark Grace
Myth or fabrication: It’s been said that Mark Grace had a secret for breaking a hitting slump. His “slump buster” was to walk into a bar and pick the fattest, ugliest animal of a woman he could find, and make sweet love to her. Grace’s recent quotes on steroids also included, “I was body by booze.” Sure, he was a slap-hitting 1980’ style first baseman, but you got to love it. Cheers Gracie, I wish you were still playing.
3. Elijah Dukes
Elijah’s antics have already been well documented on this site. But another interesting fact: Elijah attended the same juvenile detention, I mean, high school as Dwight Gooden (currently serving time for cocaine possession), and Carl Everett (doesn’t believe Dinosaurs existed.) Must have been one hell of an education.
2. Jonny Gomes
Jonny Gomes is tough: looks tough, is tough. When Gomes was 22 he had a heart attack. That’s right, a fucking heart attack. I didn’t even know that was possible before thirty. "My body was able to fight off a heart attack for 24 hours," Gomes said. "I was walking around my house in a full-blown heart attack. I have strong organs, but the bad thing is, it bruised my heart a little more than the average because most people would have gone to the hospital right away." Now in 2006 he’s slugging an astounding .746, after an impressive 2005 where he hit 21 home runs in just 100 games. One more friendly fact—Jonny’s middle name is Johnson making his full name Jonny Johnson Gomes. Not that I would say anything to him about it.
1. Darren Daulton
How could the top slot go to anyone else? I don’t really know where to start. Darren Daulton (Dutch) was a Philly for fourteen glorious years. Despite being plagued by knee problems throughout his career, he became a perennial “star,” helping lead the Phillies to the 1993 World Series and making two All-Star teams himself. And then like my friend Darren says during karaoke, things got weird. Daulton has a belief system based on conspiracies and metaphysics. In short, he thinks the world’s ending at the conclusion of the Mayan calendar on December 21st of 2006. For more information, consult this SI article by Franz Lidz.