When it comes to hazing, no sport is safe. Heck, that’s why Richie Incognito is in such deep water with the Miami Dolphins — well, that among other issues. However, there is a difference between hazing and just having fun with teammates and that’s exactly what Justin Verlander and Torii Hunter did at spring training on Tuesday.
While both players are veterans, Verlander, 31, decided to dare Hunter, 38, to face his fears and kiss a live alligator. It sounds like an extremely daunting task, but the veteran outfielder took the challenge and it was caught on camera for us all to enjoy:
As you can see, Verlander is having the time of his life watching his teammate kiss an alligator while probably soiling his own pants. Okay, so Hunter doesn’t look that scared, but Verlander still looks like he is having the best time ever.
This is one reason why the Tigers are such a successful ball club — they can do things like this as teammates to strengthen chemistry so early in the season. Verlander is usually seen as a straight-faced, serious competitor with the word “smile” not in his dictionary. However, he knows the importance of team chemistry.
With a young, lively manager like Brad Ausmus in charge of this team, they could do great things while staying loose off the field — you know, kissing alligators and such.
Let’s salute Hunter for facing his fear and kissing a live alligator — even though its mouth was clamped shut.
It’s time for Hunter to dare Verlander to face his fears off the field.
Connor Muldowney is a columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google. You can also reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.