Texas Rangers outfielder / designated hitter Lance Berkman has never been one to shy away from letting us all know what’s flowing through that head of his — at his own peril, more often than not.
This time around, Berkman took the opportunity to criticize what he considers the sub-standard conditions at Wrigley Field in a recent interview with the Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
It’s one of the worst places in baseball for, well, just about anything. I really don’t like it. I read where they got approval for some more upgrades. Count me in the group of people extremely happy to see that. I guess I’m just spoiled.
There is a tremendous history associated with it and there is something special about playing on the same field that guys like Babe Ruth did. But really, what kind of history is there? It’s not like there has been one championship after another. It’s mainly been a place for people to go and drink beer.
Conveniently enough for Berkman, his nimble toes may never grace the grass at Wrigley over the course of the next three days during the Rangers three-game set with the Chicago Cubs given that the majority of his appearances for Ron Washington‘s squad so far this season have been as a designated hitter.
Admittedly, there are some elements of Wrigley Field that need repair — and the recently announced $500 million renovation deal between the Cubs, Wrigleyville and the City of Chicago has been created to address this — but Berkman has absolutely no reason to spout off again for its own sake.
If this was the first time Fat Elvis rambled I would be willing to give him a hall pass as it perhaps being a singular incident where his mouth was running to fast for his brain to keep pace, but, alas, it isn’t.
In January 2011, Berkman, then a member of the St. Louis Cardinals bashed his former team — ironically enough, the same Texas Rangers he plays for today — for being likely to end up “average” and criticizing the pitching staff for essentially pitching over their skis:
I felt like if they didn’t re-sign Cliff Lee that they were going to be an average team and I feel that’s probably what’s going to end up happening. It’s all about your pitching. I feel like last year was one of those special years where you kind of catch lightning in a bottle and they got hot and they had some guys that I felt like were pitching better than their talent level and consequently they had a great year.
Of course, the Rangers did make another World Series that fall, with egg being left on Berkman’s face and with the ultimate irony of him playing at the Ballpark at Arlington yet to play itself out.
Sometimes this stuff writes itself. Maybe Berkman should just concentrate on those few at-bats this season and leave his opinion in that skull of his.