Mad Dog laughing all the way to Cooperstown
By Greg Sullivan
Greg Maddux won his 350th game earlier this month, but just before he did Thomas Boswell of the Washington Post was already calling Maddux's career superior to that of fellow ace Roger Clemens.
His logic--the Mitchell report.
At the end of the day I have to agree, Maddux's future grandkids will have much more to be proud of than those of Clemens.
That's how Hall of Fame careers should be judged, after all--by how much your grandkids respect what you've done with your career.
Hopefully, for the sake of Maddux's reputation, his grandkids won't dig up those corny Ingles Supermarket commercials he used to star in when he was in Atlanta, but aside from that it appears he has very little to hide.
In this scandal-ridden age, if tape reels of lame grocery store commercials is all you're hiding from your family and anyone that comes to visit your house, be them federal agents or Damon Berryhill, you're doing pretty good.
Many of you may have fond memories of Maddux's days pitching with the Braves. Along with Tom Glavine and John Smoltz, Maddux was consistently dominant. He didn't overpower opposing hitters, he outguessed and outsmarted them.
But Maddux is also an unusual figure. He reminds me of the sort-of strange guy who sat in your high school class that seemed normal but nobody really had him pegged.
His own former teammates appear to have a similar perspective.
"No Mad Dog stories for print," Glavine told Boswell. "He's so goofy you can't believe it's the same guy who's so studious, a perfectionist, when he pitches....He's Clark Kent and Superman."
Fair enough, Glavine.
Braves' third baseman Chipper Jones summed up Maddux even quicker in the column.
"He's just really, really crazy," said the red-hot slugger.
Well, Maddux may be crazy or strange. It seems as if he's probably both, but it looks like he'll be laughing to himself all the way to Cooperstown.
As the Clemens' and Bonds' of the world have their careers dissected with new attention to steroid accusations, players like Maddux, along with Glavine and Smoltz, will receive even more credit for what they did over their years in Atlanta leading the Braves to division title after division title.
"Nothing bad will come out about them," Braves Manager Bobby Cox told the Post. "They won their games on hamburgers."