Jeez, Speez

I try not be judgmental about people with tattoos. I mean, I have one, so it’s not like I’m in a position to shake my head and wonder how it is that people can be so friggin’ dumb as to have ink permanently embedded in their skin — and I’m hardly one to talk about stupid reasons for getting a tattoo, or what those stupid reasons and stupid designs say about a particular person. The stereotype, however, persists for better or worse, and I’m periodically embarrassed by the degree to which it has been cultivated in my subconscious. “That’s a pretty ugl–wait, who the hell am I to talk?” It’s not that I can’t pass judgment, my brain says, it’s that I shouldn’t. And, for the most part, I manage just fine.

Enter Scott Spiezio, proud owner of a 2005 batting average of 0.064 — I think I have a dog somewhere who can hit better than that — and newly unemployed, since the Mariners released him on Friday for having 3 hits in 47 AB. That’s a sorry-assed line, kids. Speez hasn’t just been bad, he’s been teeth-gnashingly, mind-bogglingly, historically awful. So when the Mariners finally fired him (and, in the process, finished throwing out the entirety of 2004’s starting infield) last week, there was much rejoycing in Marinerland. The front office, it would seem, learned something and ate a contract on a crappy player!

(On the other hand, they did call up Greg Dobbs, owner of a very empty .200 BA and a real pretty swing, so maybe they didn’t learn as much as we would have liked.)

The day before he was released, Spiezio was the subject of a column by the Worst Sports Columnist in Seattle (Jim Moore) about his new tattoo. As the Go2Gimp explains, Speez got himself a new tattoo to get out of his funk caused by owning a two-digit batting average. It’s a terribly article, combining all the things I can’t stand about sportswriting in one package. (The only thing missing was a lengthy moralistic tirade.) I think we’re supposed to feel some combination of sympathy for Scott because of his problems with the Mariners, and maybe some envy that he has a 27 year-old model named Jenn (with two Ns) for a girlfriend, whose image he can tattoo on his bicep. (Also, that he has a bicep big enough to accept said tattoo.) But I can’t really tell — I don’t know what sort of emotion the article was intended to engender, and I’m also not really sure what the point of the article was.

Attached to the article is a picture of the tattoo. I went and looked at the thing, and I’m seriously starting to re-think my “no picking on tattooed people” policy — if this is what people are going to be doing to themselves, well, maybe it is OK to tease them and be judgmental about it. Yeah, yeah, it takes all kinds and all that junk, but really. That’s just terrible. Gyech.

So there you have it. Two reasons to dislike Scott Spiezio: (1) Crappy BA. (2) Ugly-assed tattoo.