To help us to get into shape for baseball's opening day, here's a mini Closer. I promise I will not take out the catcher ...
If, as some are saying, Billy Crystal signing with the Yankees is making a mockery of baseball, then what do we make of Tommy Lasorda's return to the Dodgers? While Crystal is in danger of getting hurt in his one-game exhibition game stint on Thursday, Lasorda could very well keel over dead. I mean, just look at him; and remember that he's 80. I keep seeing that scene in The Godfather in which Vito Corelone falls over dead in the tomato garden (as Rafael Furcal chases him with the bug sprayer).
On Tuesday, Lasorda actually trundled out to argue a call. Heavens. Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports picks up the action: "And then Tommy Lasorda shot — well, slid — from that chair and charged — well, slogged — across the field, into the chest of that tall, angular and terribly misguided umpire. The overflow crowd stood and cheered while Lasorda, going on 12 years since a heart attack took him from the Dodgers' dugout, blew smoke and spittle in the general direction of Gary Cederstrom's neck, which just slayed the grinning umpire." I've always seen Lasorda as the Krusty the Klown of baseball, having long ago become a parody of himself. But this is just sad. And dangerous. Because when he finally does topple over, he may just begin rolling and never stop.
• Kaz Matsui Has Anal Fissures. Sorry, but I didn't know how to say it, so I just said it. As mentioned yesterday, from the Houston Chronicle: "Astros second baseman Kaz Matsui is expected to miss four or five days after being diagnosed with a condition known as anal fissure." And, AOL Fanhouse has done further research: "An anal fissure is an unnatural crack or tear in the anus skin. Various causes of this fissure include: Straining to defecate, especially if the stool is hard and dry; severe and chronic constipation; severe and chronic diarrhea; Crohn's disease and Ulcerative colitis; tight sphincter muscles; anal intercourse." I think it was a Deadspin commenter who coined the perfect term for this: "Ass Tectonics."
• Bud Selig Can Afford To Pick Up That Check. Baseball commissioner Bud Selig earned $14.5 million in baseball's latest fiscal year, according to Major League Baseball's tax return, which I obtained by opening certain filing cabinets with a brick. The best part: Selig received $140,603 for expenses. I'm pretty sure none of that was for clothing.