Simon got a raw deal

First Posted: 1/15/2009

Did I miss something? When did Randall Simon become Public Enemy No. 1?
I must have missed when he shot the tire out on that bus full of orphans. Or when he tripped that little old lady getting ready to cross a busy intersection. Or when he kicked that defenseless puppy.
What I didn't miss was the Pittsburgh first baseman playfully slapping
Reports have made it sound like Simon got a running start and sailed of the top of the dugout, blugeoning the mascot on the way down.
I saw one talk show in which they interviewed the girl in the costume -- 19-year-old Mandy Block -- inquiring about whether she planned to sue and how tramatic of an event it was for her.
Sadly, about the only person not blowing this whole event out of proporsion is Block, who is not going to sue and has repeatedly laughed off any questions saying she knows it was done as a joke.
Major League Baseball didn't see it that way, suspending Simon three games and fining him $2,000.
So let me get this straight: Sammy Sosa knowingly (you don't believe his line of crap, do you?) cheats in a game with a corked bat and is suspsended seven games, while Simon tries to play around with a mascot, something players have done for years, and he's sent home for three games?
Appearantly Simon wasn't too successful in his attempt at humor, but an even bigger joke is the way the league decided to deal with it.
Odds and ends
A quick reminder that the Oasis Shrine East-West All-Star Games are scheduled to take place over the next three days in Greensboro.
The girls basketball game will tip off at 6:30 p.m. Monday at the Greensboro Coliseum, with the boys following. The girls and boys soccer games are scheduled for 7 and 9 p.m., respectively, Tuesday at UNC-Greensboro's soccer stadium. The final East-West showdown is the football game, which will take place Wednesday at Jamieson Stadium.
Robeson County has four athletes on the various rosters for the East squads: Red Springs' Tenisha McArthur (girls basketball), Lumberton's Justin Baker (boys basketball), Fairmont's Bobby Floyd (football) and St. Pauls' Channing Pone (football).
St. Pauls football coach Tasker Fleming is also an assistant the East team.
Tim Rafalski can be reached at 739-4322, Ext. 119 or by e-mail at [email protected]

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