Any time a discussion of best-sports-anything starts, it has a tendency to get heated. Float a couple of top-of-the-head tweets even hinting at ranking the best baseball players of this generation, and suddenly everyone wants to chime in. "This guy can’t possibly be on the list." "How could you forget that guy?" Basically, the Internet was invented for three purposes: arguing about your favorite athletes, cat videos, and that other thing (Troy McClure movie poster Tumblrs).
With all that in mind, and in the grand how-could-you-be-so-wrong tradition of my own heavily biased ballparkrankings, it’s time to unveil the BestCoolest Players I’ve Ever Seen power rankings. Why am I making up words? Doing a straight ranking of best players of the past three decades could be accomplished with one click on your website of choice, for your stat of choice. This is more of a hybrid approach, combining the best players of the past generation with the coolest ones, the ones that were the most fun to watch.
We got The Great Hall of Fame Shutout of 2013, a no-vote by the Baseball Writers Association of America that ensured induction weekend will be free of living beings for the first time in 50-plus years. Players accused (Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa) or known to have used performance-enhancing drugs whether through failed tests or admissions (Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro) predictably got much less support than their raw stats would have suggested.
Meanwhile, some more interesting and subtle stories were unfolding with several of the other players who fell short of the 75 percent vote mark needed for induction, starting with the one player who got the biggest screw job of all.
In case you were out living a life of leisure, here's what you missed in sports on Thursday.
The Rams defense contained Kevin Kolb (28/50, 289 yards) and Ryan Williams (14 carries, 33 yards) en route to handing the Cardinals their first loss of the season, 17-3. Among those in attendance at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis were actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder, and President Barack Obama. Nah, I'm kidding, none of those people would ever go to that game. Grow up, St. Louis. You're pathetic.