I first saw this post about Johnny Bench on http://straitpinkie.com. And, I am completely dumbfounded. I have been scouring youtube trying to find some video of it but have been unsuccessful. As soon as I find it, I will post it. Instead, you have to admire the lovely picture above.
I honestly don’t have a clue why he is doing his impersonation and singing “Take me out to the Ballgame.” I know alot of people are going to bash Bench about this and I will be one of the first. Leave the comedy to Artie Lange and Howard Stern. I know deep down he was trying to be funny and to entertain the Hall of Fame crowd but just stop. Harry Caray is an icon and Johnny Bench is an icon. No one needs to imitate Caray ever again. Its been done over and over again.
But, lets talk again about Bench. First of all, he looks like a crazed maniac. Whatever hair he has left is sticking straight up in the air. Alot of feedback coming down right now is that he was drunk. Now again, I am not a huge Johnny Bench guy but I would bet he was just trying to get a laugh. He was honoring the induction of Andre Dawson and for Jon Miller. Give him a break, even though he is a conceited jerk.
I do hope in all honesty that this event doesn’t tarnish Johnny Bench’s baseball career. He was considered in most circles to be the best catcher to ever play. He certainly has treated me to some of the greatest baseball ever played. I grew up in the seventies idolizing the Big Red Machine. My mom and I still talk about Johnny Bench being her favorite player. But, again, I hope he comes back and issues a reason or an apology/explanation to his behavior.