Schaumburg, Illinois has no shortage of spectacle. A cursory Google search reveals that this suburb of Chicago has an indoor water park, an Ikea, and a Rainforest Cafe all stuffed within its city limits. But despite all of those commercial pleasures, I can’t imagine any of them fill the gaping spiritual hole left by the dissolution in 2010 of the crown jewel of Schaumburg: the Schaumburg Flyers, formerly of the independent Northern League, and formerly player-coached by Matt Nokes.
Nokes, as I’m sure you degenerates all know, was an All-Star once in his rookie campaign with the Tigers and then proceeded to slowly fade out of the Majors before tearing up the Northern League at the end of his career. A fun Matt Nokes story: While in the Minors, Nokes apparently flew his own plane to road games to avoid slumming it on the bus with his teammates. Via the Chicago Tribune:
While his Schaumburg teammates ride buses to such far-flung league cities as Sioux Falls, Fargo and Winnipeg, Nokes pilots his Lancair IV P aircraft—a four-seater with a pressurized cabin.
Nokes attributes his uncommon method of minor-league travel for his batting average hovering near .370 this season.
“I have not been on the bus yet,” Nokes said. “I’m definitely more rested. I fly the fastest single-engine plane in the world. Our longest trip is to Winnipeg [856 miles], and I make it in less than three hours.
I won’t lie to you: There are somehow only four Guys remembered in this week’s episode, including Matt Nokes. That’s isn’t because we skimped on length. Rather, Roth got sidetracked with long tangents not just about Schaumburg, but also—improbably—Neptune, New Jersey’s tendency to crank out Danny Devitos (plural). All that, and I still haven’t even mentioned Barry Lyons’s incredible chest hair. You can check that out for yourself.