At least Randy Johnson didn’t palm anyone’s camera lens yesterday, didn’t squeal to “get out of my face” or threaten “don’t talk back to me” to anyone.
Those gems were all uttered in his Madison Avenue meltdown about 10 minutes after deplaning Monday.
So I guess that means Johnson was on his best behavior yesterday.
And I guess we’re supposed to accept those canned comments of contrition, surely written by one of his two agents (the reason this guy needs two agents is obvious; he’s a handful).
The first-day apology didn’t quite do it, the mouthpieces were right about that. The excuse about how “the past few days have been a little overwhelming,” ranked somewhere between absurd and hilarious.
The rest of us have trouble seeing a $32-million contract extension as stressful, never mind that that the pact was probably decided months ago (wink, wink).
On second thought (and with the aid of the mouthpieces), Johnson conceded his behavior was “unprofessional” and “uncalled for.” Yet, he still tried the blame-the-victim route, claiming several times that Channel 2 cameraman Vinny Everett “jumped out of the bushes.”
Bushes? Last time I shopped for shoes, I didn’t notice much flora on Madison Avenue. Flora or fauna.
And when Channel 2 reporter Duke Castiglione dared ask him yesterday what he thought when he viewed the videotape, Johnson, rather than just repeat his mea culpa, lamely tried to dig and debate Castiglione.
I don’t know what’s bigger, Johnson’s shoe size or sense of entitlement.
There’s been a lot of worthless drivel wasted wondering whether Carlos Beltran would take to New York. Beltran told Fred Wilpon at their Puerto Rico meeting the thing he loved best was “just to play,” and the thing he hated worst was “losing in Kansas City.” Turns out he first wanted to come to the Yankees to win. The Big Unit came for the Big Payday.
Johnson, who seems decidedly smalltown, got away with his misbehavior in Seattle and Arizona (for instance, it was virtually ignored when he challenged Luis Gonzalez to a duel after Gonzalez dared misplay a fly ball). As photog Everett shot back, perhaps prophetically, “Welcome to New York.”
Things are becoming a lot clearer about this louse with his first dealings with New York, starting back at the All-Star Game in Houston, when he told one reporter to “get away from me before I do something regretful,” and threatened, “You’re the reason I’m not going to New York.” Big threat that.
Johnson told us he doesn’t like to talk from the day after he pitches until the day before he pitches, and that on days he pitches he can be “surly.” Big surprise that.
Asked whether he picked the Yankees because of the tradition or the outsized contract, Johnson rambled on about how Arizona wanted him to take a cut in its two-year extension offer.
An air-sickness bag would have come in handy right there.