November 16, 2011

Zinged By Skeeter

Skeeter Barnes, 1990 Topps

Quick question: How many Skeeter Barnes(es?) do you think there are in the world? NO CHEATING!

Did you say “one?” Yeah, I’m sure you did. Well, you are an idiot. There are two Skeeter Barnes in the world! At least two, I guess. If there are three Skeeter Barnes in the world, or even four, then I just … whatever. That is too many, in my opinion.

Anyway, one Skeeter Barnes was a baseball player and is featured above. The other Skeeter Barnes is a chain of beef and barbeque restaurants—I didn’t say they had to be people; burn!—based in Nebraska. Judging by their website, they are represented not by Skeeter Barnes the ex-ballplayer, but by an obese bald man with a very long mustache who proclaims in ALL CAPS that they have the best beef and bbq around. (Then, if you put the cursor on him, he eats the rib he is holding and exclaims, “HMM!” Sold!) Also, feel free to shop at the Skeeter Store for their array of sauces and t-shirts! Or, if you prefer, t-shirts and sauces.

Neither Skeeter Barnes the player’s Wikipedia page nor the “About Skeeter Barnes” page on the restaurant’s website express any relation between each other, and I find this to be astounding. At the risk of being redundant in using an example of a rather obscure professional athlete with a sort of silly name, this would be like a chain of seafood restaurants called Bimbo Coles that had nothing to do with the former NBA player. Really, I am dumbfounded. You? Not so much? Then I digress.

In 1983 Skeeter achieved one of his fondest dreams, making it to the major leagues with his hometown team.

That’s pretty cool, I guess. One of his other fondest dreams, however, was to be a firefighter who saves the President of the United States from a burning Oval Office, which he was never able to achieve, and which has haunted him throughout his life. Oh well!

Skeeter Barnes was a prolific minor league player who finally achieved regular big league playing time with the Tigers when he was 34 years old, and as a result, became a popular player often likened to Bull Durham’s Crash Davis. His lack of a direct affiliation with a barbeque restaurant that bears his own odd and by-contemporary-standards-kind-of-nasty-name notwithstanding, he was a great success as a professional baseball player.

His BR Bullpen page, rather oddly, concludes with a list of quotes that the reader is left to assume can be attributed to Barnes himself, although they are certainly not of the Socratic or even Yogi Berra variety. To list a few:

"Kick mule!"


"Yeah ya ain't."

These are just (non)words that don’t mean anything that seem like a response to something none of us are even aware of. This would be like attributing me with the famous quote, “Yesterday, I think.”

"Run like hell."

Was Skeeter Barnes the first/only person to ever say this? I anxiously await the Ken Burns’ documentary, “Run Like Hell,” about the time Skeeter Barnes told that guy to run like hell, and he did, and they won the game.

"Hit us a sac fly."

No wonder he later became a coach and manager:

“Strawberry! Hit a home run!”

“Sure thing, Skip.”

"Hit it over that New Grape sign."


"Yall putting me to sleep."

The nerve of not maintaining Skeeter Barnes’ attention! Better to fail and keep Skeeter Barnes alert than succeed and make Skeeter Barnes fall asleep! You know this.

"Is that Good's brother out there, No Good?"

Wow, that is terrible. Why wouldn’t Good’s brother also be good, since they are brothers and probably share many characteristics? I am confused.

"It's called cetch, not fetch."

It’s not called cetch either. Nevertheless … you’ve just been zinged by the Skeeter! DEAL WITH IT.

1 comment:

Batboy said...

If Topps wrote the BaseballReference page for Skeeter Barnes, specifically the "Transactions" section:
June 6, 1978: Achieved one of his fondest dreams when drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 16th round of the 1978 amateur draft. Achieved and fonder dream when player signed June 8, 1978.
April 26, 1985: Realized one of the most horrific nightmares possible when he got traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the Montreal Expos for Max Venable.
July 24, 1986: Still broken up by getting traded from his hometown Reds, Barnes didn't give a crap when he was traded by the Montreal Expos with Dan Schatzeder to the Philadelphia Phillies for Tom Foley and Lary Sorensen.
October 15, 1986: Granted Free Agency. Hello, Reds? This is Skeeter calling. You remember me, the guy with the dreams? No? Damn it.
January 26, 1987: After being told by his high school sweetheart since he didn't have a job or prospects he wasn't "bona fide," Barnes signed as a Free Agent with the St. Louis Cardinals. Sweetheart immediately broke up with Barnes.
July 16, 1987: In an embarrassing bit of confusion, Skeeter Barnes was purchased by the Milwaukee Brewers from the St. Louis Cardinals, when all the while the Brewers thought they were going to receive two brisket sandwiches and a half order of ribs.
October 15, 1987: Brewers GM Harry Dalton achieved one of his fondest dreams, allowing a marginal ballplayer to become a free agent.
November 20, 1987: Fortune cookie fortune comes true when signed as a Free Agent with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
May 7, 1988: After not receiving a single at bat by the team, hardly cared when released by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
May 14, 1988: Achieved one of his second fondest dreams when signed as a Free Agent with the Cincinnati Reds.
October 15, 1988: Cried for hours after being granted free agency.
November 5, 1988: Makes mad mix tape to try and get back together with estranged team, Cincinnati Reds, leading off with Whitney Houston's "One Moment in Time." Somehow, that shit works.
October 22, 1989: Damn it! Not again.
January 29, 1990: Achieves nirvana when signed as a Free Agent with the Cincinnati Reds.
October 15, 1990: Wonders if another small market, Midwestern team could ever love this blue-collar ball player who has perhaps the smallest shred of resemblance to a fictional player in a different position played by a vastly overrated actor in a movie from a couple years prior...