By now you’ve probably read the tale of Austinite Will Stewart, who upon catching Jim Thome’s 500th career HR Sunday at the Cell, eschewed financial gain and presented the ball to the slow-witted slugger.

The White Sox, showing the kind of cheapskate gratitude one would’ve expected prior to Kenny Williams’ tenure, offered Stewart a pair of 2008 season tickets. A somewhat empty gesture as the visiting accountant lives in Texas.

RW370’s Rob Warmowski
was suitably impressed by Stewart’s unselfishness.

Stewart did something unexpected in a decade history will remember for its appalling culture of greed. Ball in hand, fully aware of the (at least $100K) potential dollar value to Thome, Stewart did not grab. To the chagrin of clergy, cops, and commodity traders the country over, Stewart failed to conduct business as usual and open with a price negotiation.

Will Stewart passed up a six-figure payday – in 2007 – out of common decency.

œI feel it is a part of Chicago baseball history, said Stewart, right after handing the ball back to the White Sox slugger during a postgame press conference.

On the other hand, O.J. Simpson recently enunciated a markedly different take on the ethics of sports memorabilia when he said œHey, take this fucking pillowcase off and put those fucking balls in itœ.

With all due respect to Rob and the delusional Mr. Stewart, the only thing cheaper than hitting 500 career home runs these days is Jerry Reinsdorf himself. The one-dimensional Thome’s played all of two seasons in Chicago. I’d submit that Frank Thomas’ 3 HR’s off the Yankees last night — in a Blue Jays uniform, no less — were a bigger Chicago moment.

I’m sure Stewart’s intentions are noble, but if the 28 year old accountant even passed up a $100 payday — never mind $100K — that’s kind of sad. While Mark Ecko teases the public with the possibility of Barry Bonds’ HR no. 756 ball being blasted into outer space, where’s the outcry to have the same thing done to Thome’s ball, if not Thome himself?