What would happen if a baseball home-plate umpire went nuts and started calling terrible strikes during the World Series? Balls in the dirt, pitches over the batter's head, etc. How long would it take for the other umpires to intervene?


Oh, he still works the whole game, even if he causes a full-scale riot. The other umps aren't gonna say jack shit, because they're all union cronies. Given that Eric Gregg once handed an entire World Series to the Marlins, I could easily see MLB giving the crooked ump a chance to work Game 2 before finally pulling the plug and chalking up his malfeasance to some vague health issue. "Home plate umpire Vinny Scadiviglio has been put on official paid leave due to chronic botulism fatigue." Baseball has never been a sport to rush into a decision. They need five years and eight different committees just to change pretzel sponsors.


What do you think would happen if a TD-scoring crowd-leaper chugged a beer from a fan?


So many scalding-hot takes. I think even I would be taken aback, because I'm so used to modern Gatorade ads featuring grainy black and white footage of athletes pulling monster truck tires through a tar pit and curling small airplanes while standing on a highway overpass. The modern sports culture makes the idea of playing a sport while compromised by alcohol seem INSANE, if not downright irresponsible. Remember: People got on Barry Switzer for eating a hot dog during the fucking Pro Bowl. And a hot dog doesn't even impair your judgment (OR DOES IT?!).

So you know Colin Cowherd would get right on the "He let his teammates down!" angle if Gronk ever did this during a game. I really do hope Gronk does this, because he's the most obvious person to do it, and he'd probably score four touchdowns after it happened. In fact, I would like there to a sister football league called the Drunk NFL, where all participants MUST be loaded during gameplay. I'd like to see if the quality of play drops noticeably compared to the NFL. (NOTE: It almost certainly would, but I would ignore that, because I have a pro-booze agenda.)



Will Jameis Winston go down as the most hated professional athlete of all time? Think about it: Liberals will hate him forever for the sexual-assault allegations; conservatives will hate him forever for being a flashy, outspoken quarterback; and apolitical sports fans will hate him for ESPN's around-the-clock coverage of every stupid thing he does. Florida State fans support him for now, but once he's gone, you know a chunk of their fanbase will admit, "I never really liked that guy."


I still think Jack Johnson would take that crown, because he made lots of shitty olde-tyme racists DEEPLY angry, angry enough to legitimately plan to kill him. Some people think Winston is a prick, and some people think he's a criminal, but I don't think people see him as a tangible threat to the way American way of life the way nutjobs did back in Jack Johnson's day. Back then, you had to WORK to send a death threat. You had to write a letter and buy a stamp and go to the Pony Express saloon to mail it. Those were the days, my friend. I would rank the most hated athletes like so:

1. Jack Johnson

2. Ty Cobb

3. TO

4. John Rocker

5. Barry Bonds

6. A-Rod

7. Ben Johnson

8. Freddie Mitchell

9. Christian Laettner

10. Christian Peter

11. Dennis Rodman

12. Luis Suarez

13. Bill Laimbeer

14. Ryan Leaf

15. Winston

16. LeBron

17. Kobe

18. Tiger

(UPDATE: I forgot OJ. OJ is #1. I am moron.)

If you were being technical, you could probably also put Jackie Robinson and Ali here, although that seems wholly inappropriate. I actually loved Ty Cobb as a kid, because all the kiddie baseball books back then (you could check out these books at the library that gave you a little bio for each of the greats, along with stats to gawk at) said he was one of the best players ever, and they never mentioned the whole "scumbag racist brawl-igniter" part of his personality. Then I saw Field of Dreams, and Roy Liotta dumped on Cobb, and I was like, "Hey! He disrespected the Georgia Peach!" Then I read about some of the actual shit Cobb did, and I was like … "Oh! Oh, I see now!" So make sure your kids know about the REAL Ty Cobb.


So I think Winston still has his work cut out for him, but give him time, everyone! HE CAN DO IT.


Why don't we hear more about quarterbacks going on vocal rest? Peyton Manning losing his voice has to be as detrimental as, say, a tweaked shoulder, right? I mean, they could switch to a silent count, but has to hurt their efficiency.


I think six days between games is probably enough time to rest up Peyton's voice box for the next game. It's not like he's a singer who is spending two hours every night blasting out high notes to a packed house. When you're Celine Dion, you gotta spend the whole day talking in sign language and massaging your thyroid with frozen cucumbers to keep your voice elastic. No QB has to do that. Besides, getting hoarse only makes you sound MANLIER. I feel like I've smoked a thousand cigarettes when I get drunk and hoarse. I love it.

One of the great joys of playing QB is talking like a QB. Every single one of them comes to the line and shouts out calls five octaves lower than is necessary. It's like playing QB automatically turns you into Batman. REDDDD EIGHTY! REDDDD EIGHTY! Even when you play touch football, guys deepen their voices like that. Quarterbacks and umpires get away with this all the time, and NO ONE questions it. I wanna see a quarterback who talks like Michel'le and calls out audibles while sounding like a fucking chipmunk. "Red eighty! Come on, you guys! I said red and eighty! What's so funny?"



NFL game, fourth quarter, offensive team is down four. Last play of the game, and the quarterback throws a Hail Mary to a WIDE OPEN player. A defensive player is standing by the pylon, sees the ball, sees the open player. What would be the penalty if the defensive player picks up the pylon and throws it in the air at the football, deflecting it and causing the ball to fall incomplete?


The referee has the rarely-if-ever-used power to award a touchdown to a team if they deem that the other team has committed a patently unfair act (for example: Mike Tomlin tripping a guy while he's running down the sideline). My guess is that the referee would decide to award the offensive team a touchdown or, failing that, he would call pass interference, kick out the pylon thrower, and allow the offense to run a play from the one-yard line with no time left on the clock. And then all hell would break loose if they got stoned on the final play. The pylon-thrower (who could throw a foam block that far? I'd be impressed!) would get suspended for eight games. Skippy Bayless would cry out for the Ginger Hammer to change the result. Roger Goodell would promise to get it right by bolting pylons into the ground permanently. It would be a big mess. And now, as always, I would like to see this happen.


What if it became public that LeBron fucked Princess Kate? Does he get suspended? Does a war start? What if she leaves Will for him and they get married?


You can't suspend a guy for having sex with another consenting adult. I don't think LeBron would get in any kind of official trouble for it. I just think it would be the greatest thing to ever happen in the history of mankind. WE GOT YOUR GIRL, ENGLAND. STUFF THAT IN YOUR PINT GLASS. Kate would be disowned by the Royal Family immediately. British tabloids would cry outrage, with a whole lot of poorly veiled racism included. Every hip-hop song from here on out would mention it. It would be our biggest triumph as a nation since V-J Day. I would give LeBron a separate trophy for the accomplishment. And then both of them would die in a car accident after being chased by photogs. It would be really sad.

Email of the week:


I'm 16, and I'm terrible at talking to girls. (by terrible I mean I can't). The only girl I can talk to that I like is my sister's best friend. She also has a boyfriend who she "wants to marry". There is probably at best a 5-percent chance she likes me, but somehow I've convinced myself to think she's into me even though she isn't. What is the protocol to get rid of such an absurd thought that she's into me before I embarrass/shame myself, other than asking her?


Find a hobby. You're 16, right? Play a SHITLOAD of video games. Play so many video games that the real world begins to look fake to you. Become so obsessed with Call of Duty or some other shit that you can't even begin to think about girls or food or personal hygiene. That girl will probably end up going out of her way to avoid you, and then you win!

If you don't wanna go that route, I suggest you expose yourself (not literally!) to as many other girls as you can. Sixteeen-year-old guys will fall in love with anything. So when you think you're REALLY into one girl and she's not into you, all you have to do is find some other girl anywhere who will, like, share a piece of gum with you, and you'll be onto to stalking HER next. That's how it works. I would obsess over one girl, then get rejected, and then transfer all of that lunacy onto whatever poor, unsuspecting gal crossed my path next. Jenny's not cool anymore. CINDY IS DREAMY. Happens like it's nothing at all. Because teenage boys are psychotic.


The truth is that you're never gonna avoid embarrassment at that age, because you're so easily embarrassed. One bad text will ruin your shit for days. You have to get out there and experience a shitload of personal humiliation before it finally dawns on you that it's really not that big of a deal. And then the more you talk to ladies, the less awkward it gets, and you eventually learn how to not fuck up, and then you become confident, and then women like you. That happens at around age 35. So just hang in there, and it should all be fine. But don't tell that girl you like her. She'll destroy you.

Drew Magary writes for Deadspin. He's also a correspondent for GQ. Follow him on Twitter @drewmagary and email him at You can also order Drew's book, Someone Could Get Hurt, through his homepage.


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