Corky Strikes Back: 'The Internet Is Like A Sewer ...'S

The Hall of Fame voting comes out in a couple of hours, so it's only appropriate that we check in with our old friend Corky Simpson, the writer who did not vote for Rickey Henderson.

Corky, of course, is the former Tucson Citizen columnist who rather infamously left Rickey Henderson off of his Hall of Fame ballot (while managing to include the estimable Matt Williams). He then had the bad fortune to publish his ballot early for all the world to mock. The brunt of the resulting criticism was from blogs, of course — with Home Run Derby leading the charge — a fact that at first went unnoticed by the 71-year-old columnist.

But presumably someone told him that he had become an Internet punching bag, and Corky decided to respond. First he offered an apology. Then, in a rather lengthy interview in the Columbia Journalism Review, he said this about the criticism:

“It doesn’t bother me,” Simpson told me, “because, one, I’m too old, and my skin is too thick, and I’m a stubborn old mule from Missouri. I think of the literature on the Internet in the same way that I think of the literature on the walls of public bathrooms. With the exception that the literature on the walls of public bathrooms is a little higher class.”

OK, that was rather tepid; a clunky attempt at humor from the Underwood manual typewriter era. But Corky was only beginning to rev up the old engine:

“The Internet is like a sewer. It’s very necessary, but you wouldn’t want to spend a lot of time there.”

Ha, that was a good one — a ripsnorter, as Sam Clemens and the boys down at the Territorial Enterprise used to say. Too bad Corky didn't use that kind of creativity with his Hall of Fame ballot.

Oh, and welcome to the Hall, Matt!

Hardball [Columbia Journalism Review]