One would think Sarah Palin could do better than a college basketball player, even though Michigan athletes were well compensated at the time. Then again, Mrs. Palin was a sports reporter in Alaska when the alleged long-range jumper was nailed, and there aren't too many pros available in the 49th state.
Craig Calcaterra, one of the five best baseball bloggers in the world, wished aloud on Twitter that Mrs. Palin's fling had been with Chili Davis, so he would have had something to write about. Well Craig, we're going to pretend that she did. In our happy little land of make believe, we will imagine that ESPN was the size that it is now, that Mrs. Palin was the precursor to Erin Andrews, and that big leaguers were clamoring to "be interviewed" by the future governor. Five solid minutes of research has yielded the 1987 Fling With Sarah Palin All Star Baseball Team. I'm sure we'll get to the other sports eventually.
Our guidelines: the athletes had to be among the best at their respective positions in 1987, the year of the alleged Palin shot clock violation from Mr. Rice.
Also, let's pretend our all-star team is being introduced by the legendary Bob Hope. If you are under the age of 30, the actor-comedian used his annual Christmas special on NBC to introduce the All-America college football team, telling horrendous jokes about each player. Example: "William "The Refrigerator" Perry, Chicago Bears. Yes sir, when he opens his mouth it means both a midnight snack and a trip down the 'Bear-ing' Strait."
And away we go..
First Base: Eddie Murray, Orioles. Still a superstar in '87 and, of course, a switch-hitter!
Second Base: Willie Randolph, Yankees. Or the Tigers' Lou Whitaker if you believe bat power is more important than how to use your hands. In the field.
Shortstop: Ozzie Smith, Cardinals. The Wizard would've flipped to grant Miss Palin's wishes.
Third Base: Kevin Mitchell, Mets/Giants: Hadn't yet learned to do it bare-handed, but already had the stroke.
Outfield: Tony Gwynn, Padres; Eric Davis, Reds, and Tim Raines, Expos. A big time free-swinger, and two guys who were super fast. Well, while running the bases.
Pitcher: Dave Stewart, A's. Knows how to carry his jock.
If you're wondering why there is no catcher on the list, take a close look at the other members of our all-Palin team and what they have in common. Let's see if this helps.
Yes, according to the same book, the reason a young Sarah Palin was attracted to Glen Rice was because, at the time, she took her coffee black. Therefore, our entire '87 All-Palin team is African-American. Somewhat stunningly, there were no African-American catchers with significant playing time in Major League Baseball that year. I wonder why there was no snooty sportswriter outrage at that, considering the decades of hand wringing over the lack of black quarterbacks in pro football? Come to think of it, there are no African-American catchers in the majors today, only whites and Latinos. Anyway, that's why there is no catcher on our team. And keep your pitcher and catcher jokes to yourselves! That's not right!
Again, who Miss Palin was in bed with in 1987 matters about as much as a Houston Astros game this month. This is all in fun, Sean Hannity fans, so......aw, let the hate e-mail begin.