But if there was, you could be damn sure that A.J. Pierzynski would lead the Major Leagues in all of three of them — every year, all the time.
Late in the White Sox game against the visiting Blue Jays Sunday, the score was tied with two men on base when a Jays batter hit a knuckling dribbler down the third base line. Everyone at Sox Park was thinking the same thing as A.J. while he all-out-hustled after the ball: Let it be foul.
Eventually, the ball found its way over the white lip, into the grass, foul ball. The crowd sighed in harmonious relief.
But instead of simply picking up the ball, Pierzynski, with his glove, slapped it violently towards the home dugout with the type of ferocity more often seen from 1980s era offensive tackles loaded up on juice. He let out a hellacious “ARRRGGGHHH!” then stared down the anxious baserunners with that A.J.’s-gonna-kill-you-in-your-sleep-and-eat-your-children-raw glare.
It was awesome.
Say what you will about A.J. Pierzynski, but with fierceness like that, the dude is an instant and absolute asset to his team. It’s only April and on every single play he’s grinding like it was Game Seven of the World Series — as if his life, his country, his freedom were on the line.
That’s someone I want on my team — if not for his competitiveness, then for his uncanny foray into the wild world of comedy:
Love him or hate him, A.J. is the Polish Prince of Pertinacity. You’d have to kill him to make him go away; and if you do kill him, you still better watch out because I bet zombie A.J. would be much scarier, much more lethal than alive-and-breathing A.J.
Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.