Baseball is a simple game--you throw the ball, you catch the ball, you hit the ball. And if you're Don Carman, when it's all over, you go back and you rehearse your post-game cliches. The quirky Philly reliever had gotten sick of cycling the same set of standardized answers for press conferences--likely even moreso in the 1989 season, where his 5-15 record saw him lead the NL in losses--and decided it was time to let the reporters just fill in the blanks for him. So on June 19th, 1990, after picking up the win in a 2-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates, he posted a handwritten list of 37 post-game evergreens on his locker, and invited the press to pick their favorites.
It was an impressively post-modern move for the Phillie vet, and you'd be surprised how many of the cliches are still getttng beaten to death on a nightly basis today. But hey, don't take my word for it! Here's the full list, in all its begrudging, sardonic glory:
1. I'm just glad to be here. I just want to help the club any way I can.
2. Baseball's a funny game.
3. I'd rather be lucky than good.
4. We're going to take the season one game at a time.
5. Your're only as good as your last game (last at-bat).
6. This game has really changed.
7. If we stay healthy we should be right there.
8. It takes 24 (25) players.
9. We need two more players to take us over the top: Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.
10. We have a different hero every day.
11. We'll get 'em tomorrow.
12. This team seems ready to gel.
13. With a couple breaks, we win that game.
14. That All-Star voting is a joke.
15. The catcher and I are on the same wavelength.
16. I just went right at 'em.
17. I did my best and that's all I can do.
18. You just can't pitch behind.
19. That's the name of the game.
20. We've got to have fun.
21. I didn't have my good stuff, but I battled 'em.
22. Give the guy some credit, he hit a good pitch.
23. Hey, we were due to catch a break or two.
26. That's why they pay him ---- million dollars.
27. Even I could have hit that pitch.
28. I know you are but what am I?
29. I was getting my off-speed stuff over so they couldn't sit on the fastball.
30. I had my at 'em ball going today.
31. I had some great plays made behind me tonight.
32. I couldn't have done it without my teammates.
33. You saw it . . . write it.
34. I just wanted to go as hard as I could as long as I could.
35. I'm seeing the ball real good.
36. I hit that ball good.
37. I don't get paid to hit.
Regrettably, this would be Carman's last season of tripe-spewing in Philadelphia, as he signed with the Reds as a free agent the following season.