September 4, 2011

Glenn Burke: tragic victim of homophobia or his own all-around suckiness?

From ESPN.com, about Glenn Burke, a 1970s ballplayer who died of AIDS:
What most people didn't know was that Burke was gay. Following his retirement, in 1980, he became the first major leaguer to come out. Even though he tried to keep his sexuality a secret during his playing days, there had been rumors in the clubhouse. And as the 2010 television documentary Out: The Glenn Burke Story revealed, Dodgers executives scrambled to squash those rumors at all costs: In the off-season of 1977, team VP Al Campanis offered Burke $75,000 to get married. According to a friend, Burke rejected the marriage deal with a mix of wit and rebelliousness. He told Campanis, "I guess you mean to a woman." 
It was around that time that Burke struck up a relationship with Spunky Lasorda, aka Tommy Lasorda Jr. Spunky was a lithe young socialite who frequented West Hollywood's gay scene, smoking cigarettes from a long holder. A 1992 GQ profile of Spunky portrayed his homosexuality as an open secret. But his father was in staunch denial and remained so even after Spunky's death, in 1991, from pneumonia. GQ reported that the death certificate said his illness was likely AIDS-related. "My son wasn't gay. No way," Lasorda Sr. told the magazine.
Burke and Spunky's relationship didn't become public until years later and remains ambiguous. Burke's sister, Lutha Davis, insists the two men were just close friends. In his 1995 memoir, Out at Home, co-authored with Erik Sherman, Burke went out of his way to leave the true nature of the relationship unclear. "That's my business," he wrote. He also explained that Lasorda Sr.'s homophobia was something he and Spunky commiserated about. Burke described them turning up together at Lasorda's house one night, done up in pigtails and drag, hoping to stage a kind of gay Guess Who's Coming to Dinner. They chickened out before knocking on the door. 
Whatever the case, Burke's association with Spunky marks the point at which his big league career took an irrevocable left turn. Lasorda stopped being amused by the player's dugout antics and, according to Burke, turned on him. "Glenn had such an abundance of respect and love for Tommy Lasorda," says Burke's sister. "When things went bad at the end, it was almost like a father turning his back on his son." Early in the 1978 season, the Dodgers abruptly dealt Burke to the Oakland A's — among the most lackluster teams in baseball — for Billy North, an outfielder past his prime. L.A. sportswriters described the trade as sucking the life out of the Dodgers' clubhouse. A couple of players were seen crying at their lockers.
For Burke the trade had everything to do with his sexuality — though the outfielder sounded off to the press about it in only the most cryptic terms. "I never got a chance here," he said. "I felt I was supposed to kiss ass and I didn't." 
After unproductive years in 1978 and '79, Burke hoped for a fresh start in 1980 under new A's manager Billy Martin. But the gay rumors followed Burke to Oakland. Martin threw the word "faggot" around the clubhouse and didn't play Burke. Some teammates even avoided showering with him. Burke, accustomed to being the heart of the clubhouse, felt crippled by the discomfort he was causing. His unhappiness was compounded by a knee injury and a demotion to Triple-A. After playing just 25 games in the minors in 1980, he abruptly retired. He was 27 years old. "It's the first thing in my life I ever backed down from," he later said.
Burke started hanging around San Francisco's Castro district. He became a star shortstop in a local gay softball league and dominated in the Gay Softball World Series. "I was making money playing ball and not having any fun," he said of his time in the majors. "Now I'm not making money, but I'm having fun." Jack McGowan, a friend in the Castro who has since passed away, once said of Burke: "He was a hero to us. He was athletic, clean-cut, masculine. He was everything that we wanted to prove to the world that we could be." 
In the Castro, Burke's creation of the high five was part of his Herculean mystique. He would flash his magnetic smile and high-five everyone who walked by. In 1982, he came out publicly in an Inside Sports magazine profile called "The Double Life of a Gay Dodger." The writer, a gay activist named Michael J. Smith, appropriated the high five as a defiant symbol of gay pride. Rising from the wreckage of Burke's aborted baseball career, Smith wrote, was "a legacy of two men's hands touching, high above their heads." 
By that time, however, Burke was struggling with a drug habit. It escalated in 1987, when a car plowed into him as he was crossing a street, breaking his right leg in four places and stealing his athleticism. He couldn't hold a job. He went broke. He did some time at San Quentin for grand theft. Then, in 1993, he tested positive for HIV. He passed away on May 30, 1995, after a sharp and grisly decline.

I remember Glenn Burke from when I was an intense Dodger fan in the late 1970s. He struck me then as a useless waste of space any time he got into the lineup. Looking up his statistics, I see I was right: In his career, he had 556 plate appearance, or about one full season's worth. His career stats in MVP form were .237 average, 2 homers, and 38 rbi. He got all of 22 walks in his career. His career on base percentage was .270 and slugging average was .291, for an OPS of .561. His OPS+ on a scale where an average big leaguer is 100 was 57. His career wins above replacement was -3.1, evenly split by being terrible on both offense and defense. The remarkable thing about Burke was not that his promising career was sidetracked by irrational discrimination, but they let him stay in the big leagues so long when there were better players in Triple A.

63 comments:

Matt said...

For all we know, he had the ability to be great, if only he'd held off on actively making war against his body.

It isn't "homophobia" that keeps gay lifespans under 65 on average, it's anatomy and epidemiology that do that. When you fight against nature, it has a way of fighting back...

Anonymous said...

How come there's no mention that Glenn Burke was black?

Dennis Dale said...

It's official: the high-five is gay.
I've been saying it for years...

Anonymous said...

Well, the latter I guess, based on my extensive knowledge of cricket. Ok, seriously, I have no idea, but it's a great question.
Gilbert pinfold.

Anonymous said...

Well, Mr.Sailer, he was definitely a much better player than you, the masculine heterosexual man. In fact, he was better than 99.99% of all high school masculine straight jocks evident that he was good enough to turn pro which 99.99% of high school athletes are not.

Your obsession with male homosexuality and the desire to prove, ad nauseum, they they are a bunch of sissies is so ridiculous that is acquires hysterical proportions. Just like your crusade to stop gays from getting the right to get married. This is something that doesen't affect you negatively in any way. Why do you care so much? Gay men are on average not as masculine as traight men. So what? Who cares? This is of no conequence to anyone except gay men trying to get dates. Live and let live. Lose the 'tude, dude.

I don't have a problem with conservatives living conservative lifestyles, but the problem is that conservatives actively seek out and try to control other people's lives. I only have a problem with conservatives because conservatives have a problem with me. Every time some stupid law is passed restricting my freedom, it is because of the 'effin conservatives. What a bunch of boring, callous, prickly, judgemental and spiteful people you are. No sense of humor, empathy for others who think differently than you do or joie de vivre. Judging and controlling other people's lives are your raison d'être. It is a good thing, though, that, because you tend to be lacking in intellectual abilities - which is the reason why you believe the things you do in the first place -, that you have slowly and assuredly been losing power throughout the Western World since the Enlightnment and especially over the past few decades. Most people eventually mature and realize that a society of mature adults tolerates the fact that different people have different ways of living their lives and pursuing happiness; others remain children trying to get daddy(the state) to punish other kids who don't follow the rules. But you'll lose because even your beloved Founding Fathers were libertarians and not conservatives. The Constitution of the United States is almost a celebration of libertarianism in pure form.

theo m. said...

> all-around suckiness
The post is ok but that is over the top. The guy is dead, give him a break. How about "tragic victim of homophobia or himself?"

theo m. said...

ot, for your archives--funny detail in a funny article about Ahnold:

http://www.qis.net/~jschmitz/arnold.html

All of Hollywood was there. Event chairmen for the evening were Peter Guber (Sony) and Jon Peters (formerly Sony). Cochairmen included the rest of the most powerful men in pictures: studio bosses Sid Sheinberg and Tom Pollock (MCA/Universal), Barry Diller (Fox), Michael Eisner (Disney), Martin Davis (Paramount), and Terry Semel and Bob Daly (Warner Bros.), former studio owners Marvin Davis and Jerry Weintraub (another of Bush's pals); monster agents Jeff Berg and Lou Pitt (ICM) and Michael Ovitz (CAA); and independents such as David Geffen and Mario Kassar (Carolco). one of the cochairs commented later, only a bit hyperbolically, "I think Arnold was the only goy in the room. Except for Maria."

G.L.Piggy said...

I hate being a gratuitous self-linker, but I wrote about Burke after ESPN's 30-for-30 documentary on him last year. To me it shows that the sports world is willing to switch off between celebrating a man like Jackie Robinson's overcoming adversity to excel in the Big Leagues and a man like Glenn Burke's "could have been a contenda'" like career. Progressives and liberals (which sports writers mostly are) get to have their cake and eat it too.

http://glpiggy.net/2010/11/17/which-wall-did-glenn-burke-hit/

Anonymous said...

I heard Burke invented the reacharound. Steve, don't try and take that from him.

Dan in DC

Anonymous said...

This article is typical of the dishonesty of today's media, which is always looking for the story about a minority of some sort fighting against a biased and bigoted system that denies him from reaching his full potential, resulting in a tragic ending.

Here is the context that is missing:

1) The author mentions that the 1978 trade of Burke sucked the life out of the Dodgers clubhouse and left players in tears. Yeah, the heart was so torn out of the clubhouse and the players were so devastated that they reached the World Series in 1978 and won the WS in 1981.

2) While it was probably true that Bill North was a player in decline, his contributions to the Dodgers during approximately a half season of at bats in 1978 were far beyond what Burke could have contributed. North posted an impressive .371 OBP and scored 54 runs, more than Burke scored in his entire career (50 runs in 523 at bats). By any honest measure, this trade was a steal for the Dodgers, and likely only could have been made because North was not being used by the A's. In fact, I'm not even sure you could say he was in decline as North was only 30 in 1978 and his next two years with the Giants were that far off statistically from his seasons with the A's. The article makes it seem as though an important player was given away for a feeble veteran. In truth, North was an adequate player who had value as a leadoff hitter with a high OBP and speed in relatively light hitting era, while Burke--to put it charitably--was a marginal (at best) major leaguer who should have been thankful to have had a cup of coffee with the Dodgers and been a part of the 1977 WS team.

3) The author makes it seem as though his rejection by baseball due to being gay led to his tragic demise. More likely, it was his lifestyle choices (gay sex, drug abuse, theft) and the misfortune of being hit by a car that ruined his life. Baseball, or anti-gay bigotry, can't be blamed for his acquiring AIDS or ending up in jail, nor can it be blamed for the car accident. As I see it, a straight player wouldn't have lasted a day longer in the majors with Burke's numbers.

None of this is to suggest that managers should go around shouting anti-gay slurs or that Burke didn't face some pressure from those inside baseball who should have stayed out of his personal life. Nor would I dispute that Lasorda or Billy Martin could be mean-spirited a**holes to players they didn't like for whatever reason. But if Burke was so beloved in the Dodgers clubhouse that players cried upon hearing of his trade, and if his dugout antics originally endeared him to Lasorda, it's hard to imagine that being a gay baseball player could have been the hell that this article tries to imply. Also, getting involved with a manager's son (or even daughter) isn't too smart.

Thousands of MLB players have been traded from contending teams to "lackluster" teams, and most of them were baseball players with far superior talents and accomplishments to Burke.

G.L.Piggy said...

It's curious to me that Burke made it *to* the Big Leagues and then fizzled out. Why would the Big Leagues be any more homophobic than the minors, etc?

Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Larry Doby, Hank Aaron, Willie Mays - many others - faced racial discrimination at some point in their careers but still shined.

I think is, again, a case of the homosexual agenda coopting the black civil rights agenda for their own ends. Burke just couldn't cut it; that's all there is to it.

Paul said...

Every time some stupid law is passed restricting my freedom, it is because of the 'effin conservatives.

I hear you, brutha!

- Like those laws restricting what kinds of guns and ammo I can buy, how often I can buy them, and where I can carry them.

- Like those laws that prevent me from lighting up a cig at a bar, outside cafe, playground.

- Like those laws that can get me busted for sexual harassment for just joking around at work. (So much for joie de vivre!)

- Like those laws that say how many miles per gallon my car has to get, and what kind of safety gear it has to have, and what I have to wear if I ride a bicycle or motorcycle.

- Like those laws that can seize my private property and turn it into a park or shopping center or anything else the government wants to build.

- Like those laws that say I can't choose the ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation of the people I hire, serve in my restaurant, or sell my house to.

- Like those laws that tax me to support people whose lifestyles I disapprove of, and to teach my children things I find abhorrent.

Man, those `effin conservatives really really hate freedom, don't they?

Anonymous said...

All this from a guy whose last name could belong to one of the Village People, makes friends with the likes of Chris Brand and frequently mentions the good looks of male actors while rarely noticing how hot (but will if they're not) the females are.

Also, nicknaming a kid Spunky is generally a bad idea. That the dad didn't stop calling him this by the time the kid reached puberty is telling...

Freddy Rumson said...

If Burke invented the "High Five" did Obama invent the Fuehrer Salute?



http://tinyurl.com/3psvdhu

Thripshaw said...

Is the comment by the Gay Kruschev (we will bury you, you will lose) some kind of joke?

First the cookie cutter shot against 'effin conservatives who are obviously just a bunch of boring, callous, prickly, judgemental, spiteful children with no sense of humor, empathy or joie de vivre.

And of course lacking in intellectual abilities - you big stupidhead, Steve!

Then the flaming Kruschev bit -

you have slowly and assuredly been losing power throughout the Western World since the Enlightenment and especially over the past few decades....

Even your beloved Founding Fathers were homosexuals and not conservatives. The Constitution of the United States is almost a celebration of homsexuality in pure form...

Anonymous said...

"All this from a guy whose last name could belong to one of the Village People..."

Again and again, the worst thing that gays can think of throwing back at straights who've expressed some unflattering sentiment about them is that these straights are secretly gay! Don't you see that this defeats your rhetorical purpose? If even gays and their fans are using "gay" as an insult, what does that say about homosexuality? Presumably, gays and their fans would know more about the true nature of homosexuality than most. And even THEY use it as an insult against those who've offended them. Case closed.

Anonymous said...

"As I see it, a straight player wouldn't have lasted a day longer in the majors with Burke's numbers."

I was thinking the same thing (A's fan here and I remember both North and Burke).

As I read the article, I wondered what contribution to the clubhouse Burke made--for it was certainly not his play on the field or at the plate--that "sucked the life" out of it when he was playing.

Was he the clubhouse jokester? The good-natured prankster? The father or brother-confessor? The entertaining storyteller? All clubhouses have such players and it's just as likely to be a bench-warmer as a starting player, but his specific contribution(s) is left unclear.

The guy mistreated his body--old story, gay or straight.

To the guy who said this,

"Your obsession with male homosexuality and the desire to prove, ad nauseum, they they are a bunch of sissies is so ridiculous that is acquires hysterical proportions. Just like your crusade to stop gays from getting the right to get married."

Hmm, I've read Steve for quite some time and have never detected anything but straight-up equanimity in his treatment of topics regarding homosexuality.

You're the one who sounds hysterical. You seem to be re-inforcing stereotypes...but then, as we know, stereotypes exist because there is truth to them.

Anonymous said...

Funny that the writer didn't point out that Rusty Staub, homosexual gentleman, had one fine and long career.

It seems that Staub simply had (has) personal traits, along with his physical ability to hit the ball, that enabled him to succeed in the environment of MLB, traits that Burke may not have possessed.

It's not news when an athlete who seems gifted physically doesn't make it in the Bigs while others do.

Anonymous said...

Man, those `effin conservatives really really hate freedom, don't they?

Sure, and those effin' liberals too. That's why I'm a libertarian.

Anonymous said...

Matt:

For all we know, he had the ability to be great, if only he'd held off on actively making war against his body.

Actively making war aginst his body. That sounds real good. But it's something I heard before from alcoholic hypocrites about pot-smokers.

It isn't "homophobia" that keeps gay lifespans under 65 on average, it's anatomy and epidemiology that do that. When you fight against nature, it has a way of fighting back...

It is perfectly possible for gays to live a long happy life. Many of them do, by exercising a little restraint and personal responsibility. The oft-hyped hedonistic lifestyle doesn't apply to all gays; mostly those of a certain generation. My own experience is that the younger gays are more careful.

And fighting agaist nature? That perfectly describes communism and certain religions....

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous said...

Just like your crusade to stop gays from getting the right to get married. This is something that doesen't affect you negatively in any way. Why do you care so much?"

F**king around with one of the fundamental institutions of society affects all of us.

Idiot.

rightsaidfred said...

Pro homosexual anonymous 4:51 said:

... because [insert one of the usual liberal insults] you [conservatives] have slowly and assuredly been losing power throughout the Western World since the Enlightnment and especially over the past few decades.

Laugh while you can. The replacement for conservative heterosexual males in the West looks to be more along the lines of Hispanic votes against your beloved prop 8, Muslim sensibilities, and whatever the Chinese deem best.

Anonymous said...

Re: HIV

Steve, have you seen this?

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110825091931.htm

Researchers were puzzled about why rates of HIV infection have been on the rise. It seems that homosexual men already on retroviral HIV therapy are managing to infect others with HIV drug resistant strains.


From the article--

"A new study in Israel reveals that the number of new HIV cases diagnosed each year in the last decade saw a startling increase of almost 500% compared to the previous decade, and similar trends have been reported in a number of other developed nations, including the U.S."

and

"Prof. Grossman and her colleagues found that an overwhelming number of new cases were infected with HIV strains that had already developed resistance to existing HIV drug therapies. Because the virus can only become resistant if previously exposed to medication, this result indicates that new patients are often infected by an HIV-positive partner already receiving the therapies. More often than in the past, HIV found in different patients could be traced back to a common source."

It's hard to modify human behavior, especially male sexual behavior. and it's clear that certain kinds of sexual practices will always, and I do mean always, give pathogens the upper hand.

Mark said...

Anonymous at 4:51:

That's quite the screed! I doubt Sailer is obsessed with showing gay men are less masculine than straight men because of personal insecurities. He seems to be the type who is constantly trying to understand where different groups of people fit in relation to each other and why. I can empathize, which is why I follow his blog.

Having said that, animosity toward gays does come through now and again in his posts.

Laban said...

I must confess to finding this a trifle mean-spirited. A decline and fall is always sad, even when - perhaps especially when - there's an element of self infliction. And it's sad whether the individual is a star or a 'waste of space'.

I know the MSN likes to fit the tale into an existing narrative, and therefore he must be a great player, just as in the UK papers every executive who commits suicide is a 'high-flyer' and every undergraduate is 'brilliant'. But this piece is a little too much like a reverse image of the MSN.

Whiskey said...

White Men make up roughly half of the 65% of America that is White. Or, about 32.5% of the population. There is no problem that liberals, Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, women, and gays have with openly discriminating against Straight White men. In fact, our Attorney General, one Eric Holder, the first Black man to hold that position, testified that White men are not protected by hate crimes legislation and have no civil rights. And that it was "an insult to my people" to suggest that Whites have civil rights.

Since we've already established a double standard, and open discrimination against Straight White men, why not discrimination against Gay Men? Gays are only 2-3% of the population (including lesbians). So assuming a half-half Gay/Lesbian distribution, why not discriminate against an unimportant and non-productive (economically) group in favor of say, the 31.5% of the population that generates wealth?

How important to America's wealth, success, security, and power is a Gay Fashion Designer vs. a Straight White Male engineer. We have a massive deficit, red ink all over the place, 9% official unemployment (more like 16% U-6 real unemployment) so its time for bs to walk, and money to talk. Economic recovery and wealth generation won't come from fabulous Gay men in the Castro District. Fabulous Gay Men will simply have to take a back seat to economically productive centers, or start generating real wealth (not wealth transfers ala Half Sigma).

Anonymous said...

(Michael Farris)

For an exception to Steve's "gay athletes suck (when they're playing too!)" mantra, meet Garreth Thomas (British of course)

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2009/12/19/welsh-rugby-star-gareth-thomas-reveals-hes-gay/

Chances are if his former wife had ever come to term, he would have stayed in the closet (such as it was, his preferences were apparently a very badly kept secret long before he made it official).

Yeah, he's an outlier but an interesting one.

Get Off My Lawn! said...

To Anonymous 4:51:

Steve is not a homophobe any more than he is an anti-Semite. Some of the people who post here are both, but he is neither. I've been following Steve for years, long enough to be convinced that he really does take people as individuals and seems not to harbor rancor or unreasoning prejudice against any group.

It is not bigotry to point out that groups - ethnic, racial, social class, or sexual - vary in their behaviors and inherent abilities.

It is not bigotry to point out how those differences might affect society as a whole.

It is not bigotry to point out that the mainstream media - including the conservative MSM - like to cover up the realities of inter-group differences except when it is a matter of white heterosexual males looking bad.

It is not bigotry to point out the degree that many groups have turned justified grievances about past injustice into a state of permanent victimhood, leading them to ally with other victim groups with whom they otherwise have nothing in common.

In this case, it appears that Burke was not a very good baseball player, which is most likely why he was traded. After baseball, his own bad choices led at least in part to his downfall. (Not knowing when he was infected with HIV makes it hard to say whether he deliberately ignored the risk of unprotected sex or not.) He is hardly the first athlete this happened to.

As for the trade to Oakland - do you think a manager would trade away a winning star player solely out of bigotry? That's like claiming banks would willingly make less money - despite the fact that making money is their sole reason for existence - by deliberately denying high-quality minority borrowers purely to indulge their own bigotry.

Oh, wait ... the victim-left does claim that, don't they?

Dennis Dale said...

The Wave was invented by a lesbian sailor in San Diego.

Shouting Thomas said...

Well, Mr.Sailer, he was definitely a much better player than you, the masculine heterosexual man. In fact, he was better than 99.99% of all high school masculine straight jocks evident that he was good enough to turn pro which 99.99% of high school athletes are not.

A hilarious response.

Unfortunately, Burke was competing against other major league players, not Steve Sailer, for playing time.

Sailer's argument, as I read it, was that Burke's skills weren't sufficient to compete against other major leaguers. Further, Sailer argued that Burke wasn't a victim of discrimination by the Dodger... he just wasn't good enough.

The article Sailer was criticizing tried to build a case that Burke's baseball career was derailed by discrimination.

That, it appears, was just not the case.

Dennis Dale said...

The first person to shout "yer a bum!" was a First Nations woodcarver. Ironically, homeless.

G Joubert said...

Anonymous @4:51 said...

I don't have a problem with conservatives living conservative lifestyles, but the problem is that conservatives actively seek out and try to control other people's lives.

Nah. It's only a reluctance to whimsically rubbish 5,000 years of recorded human history and established social norms.

JSM said...

"I don't have a problem with conservatives living conservative lifestyles, but the problem is that conservatives actively seek out and try to control other people's lives."

That's because non-conservatives are always trying to get us conservatives living conservative lifestyles to *pay* for the negative consequences stemming from the non-conservative lifestyles --
like forcing us to fund AIDS research and treatment and AIDS-related disability payments, for example.


"I only have a problem with conservatives because conservatives have a problem with me."

Our *problem* with you is you cost US money.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Anonymous 4:51

I don't think it's Steve that's sounding obsessed here.

Anonymous said...

"A couple of players were seen crying at their lockers."


This is really unlikely

Anonymous said...

"'A couple of players were seen crying at their lockers.'


This is really unlikely"

Sometimes you laugh so much you shed tears. My guess is someone told a gay joke so funny that it cracked them up.

Reg Cæsar said...

As Steve once sputtered about neoconservatives-- and Steve doesn't sputter that often-- gay activists have to win every GD argument. It's all spin, all the time.

But they can hardly help being high-strung ninnies-- they were born that way.

Reg Cæsar said...

Whoever came up with the goofy neologism "homophobia" was displaying his own all-around suckiness at Greek.

"Fear of the similar." Right. Sounds like multiculturalism to me.

Anonymous said...

Ditto what Laban said.

Peter A said...

"- Like those laws that prevent me from lighting up a cig at a bar, outside cafe, playground.

- Like those laws that can seize my private property and turn it into a park or shopping center or anything else the government wants to build."

Actually these two laws typically are supported by "effin conservatives" at the local level.

Oddly, everyone I know who smokes is a liberal (either a woman, black or a hipster, or some combination of the 3). You rarely see white working class men smoking anymore, at least in the Northeast. Smoking seems to be seen more and more as effeminate.

Truth said...

He was actually a very good player in the minors, Steve-O, so who knows?

Minors Batting Glossary · Hide Partial · SHARESHARE [X] · CSV · PRE · LINK · More Tools
Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB
1972 19 2 Teams 2 Lgs A--Rk LAD 55 186 57 10 1 2 .306 .403 75
1972 19 Ogden PION Rk LAD 14 45 9 1 0 0 .200 .222 10
1972 19 Spokane NORW A- LAD 41 141 48 9 1 2 .340 .461 65
1973 20 2 Teams 2 Lgs A LAD 121 406 121 18 3 11 .298 .438 178
1973 20 Daytona Beach FLOR A LAD 110 372 115 17 2 10 .309 .446 166
1973 20 Bakersfield CALL A LAD 11 34 6 1 1 1 .176 .353 12
1974 21 2 Teams 2 Lgs A-AA LAD 117 457 416 65 127 22 2 8 60 29 7 31 76 .305 .356 .425 .782 177 6 4 2 4 2
1974 21 Bakersfield CALL A LAD 66 288 263 46 89 17 0 7 46 20 2 19 45 .338 .385 .483 .868 127 6 3 0 3 2
1974 21 Waterbury EL AA LAD 51 169 153 19 38 5 2 1 14 9 5 12 31 .248 .305 .327 .632 50 1 2 1
1975 22 Waterbury EL AA LAD 119 478 129 14 2 12 .270 .383 183
1976 23 Albuquerque PCL AAA LAD 116 492 467 72 140 17 10 7 53 63 13 18 71 .300 .321 .424 .745 198 0 0 7
1977 24 Albuquerque PCL AAA LAD 47 215 188 42 58 9 5 6 47 20 5 20 42 .309 .372 .505 .877 95 2 0 5

1980 27 Ogden PCL AAA OAK 25 94 84 7 19 3 1 2 12 2 3 7 15 .226 .283 .357 .640 30 0 2 1
7 Seasons 600 2328 2225 186 651 93 24 48 172 114 28 76 204 .293 .315 .421 .736 936 6 6 4 17 2
A (2 seasons) A 187 694 669 46 210 35 3 18 46 20 2 19 45 .314 .334 .456 .790 305 6 3 0 3 2
AAA (3 seasons) AAA 188 801 739 121 217 29 16 15 112 85 21 45 128 .294 .330 .437 .767 323 2 2 13
AA (2 seasons) AA 170 647 631 19 167 19 4 13 14 9 5 12 31 .265 .279 .369 .648 233 1 2 1
Rk (1 season) Rk 14 45 45 9 1 0 0 .200 .200 .222 .422 10
A- (1 season) A- 41 141 141 48 9 1 2 .340 .340 .461 .801 65

Janice said...

Hmm, I've read Steve for quite some time and have never detected anything but straight-up equanimity in his treatment of topics regarding homosexuality.

You're the one who sounds hysterical. You seem to be re-inforcing stereotypes...but then, as we know, stereotypes exist because there is truth to them.


Agreed. Anonymous 9/5/11 4:51 AM seems to be a pot calling the kettle black. He's projecting his hysterics, his insecurities, his depravity and his disdain towards Sailer.

not a hacker said...

True, given Burke's lack of production, his trading shouldn't have caused much grief in the Dodger dugout. However, Steve's last sentence is actually wrong: they let him stay in the big leagues ... when there were better players in Triple A. Actually, what the Dodgers had at AAA in the '70's and early '80's was a steady stream of fast outfielders who showed no power. Just before Burke was Von Joshua. Then came Rudy Law (identical stats to Burke), Jeffrey Leonard (traded to Houston where he had zero hrs. in 484 plate appearances), Ron Roenicke, Bobby Mitchell (who I once induced into a double play), Lemmie Miller. For the Dodgers, the decade was a wholesale washout for outfielders.

Eric Rasmusen said...

Matt said: "It isn't "homophobia" that keeps gay lifespans under 65 on average, "

Do you have a source for that? I've wondered about homosexual death rates and don't know of a place to look.

ELVISNIXON.com said...

The AP reports that fully 1 in every 5 homosexual men has HIV/AIDS

This puts the lie to the oft repeated statement on the left that 10% of Americans are "gay."

If only one half of one percent of the country is HIV infected, which represents supposedly 1 in 5 "gay" or bisexual men, that puts the gay/bisexual percentage of the population at 2.5%.

Now, are you going to try and convince me that to get to the other 7.5% REQUIRED to get to that 10% figure breaks down as the following?

50% of the population being female would require fully 15% of them to be lesbian to get 10% of the total population to be gay/bisexual that we’re told it is.

I’m sorry, there’s just no way that these numbers work.

So once again the media is caught in a blatant lie- all it takes is some basic math to expose their agenda.

Obama lifted the travel quarantine against those with AIDS entering the USA this year.

American citizens will now be exposed to HIV and AIDS unnecessarily.

They will also be compelled to pay for the healthcare of the AIDS victims once they enter our borders.

Money that could go to treat cancer and heart disease will go to treat HIV.

Meanwhile our military is put at risk of being compromised with AIDS blood so that Obama and the leftists can appear to be "courageous" as they collect millions from Soros and the "gay" lobby.

ELVISNIXON.com said...

CHICAGO (AP)— One in five sexually active gay and bisexual men has the AIDS virus, and nearly half of those don't know they are infected, a federal study of 21 U.S. cities shows.

Experts said the findings are similar to earlier research, but the study released Thursday is the largest to look at gay and bisexual U.S. men at high risk for HIV. More than 8,000 men were tested and interviewed, and 44 percent of those who had the virus didn't know they had it.

Overall, less than half of 1 percent of Americans have the AIDS virus, according to a calculation by the Kaiser Family Foundation, a research and policy organization in Washington, D.C.

But gay and bisexual men continue to be infected at much higher rates, said Jennifer Kates, Kaiser's director of global health and HIV policy.

"We don't have a generalized epidemic in the United States. We have a concentrated epidemic among certain populations," she said..."

Those "certain populations" will certainly spread AIDS amongst the troops. The blood supply for combat soldiers will be contaminated with HIV and AIDS.

Is the goal of Obama and the Democrats to create a new AIDS crisis? An AIDS crisis that will devastate soldiers,sailors and marines?

This is where Obamacare tax money will go- to his constituency


(For those who doubt the horrific 1 in 5 with HIV/Statistic here is the link)

http://tinyurl.com/3bamee9

Anonymous said...

You rarely see white working class men smoking anymore, at least in the Northeast. Smoking seems to be seen more and more as effeminate.

That may be an unintended consequence of AIDS. Smoking helps with weight loss. Macho working-class men don't want to look like "skinny aidsy faggots", so they don't smoke, and stay healthy that way. Of course, it means that macho men eat more fatty food instead, and become unhealthy in another way.

Anonymous said...

He was actually a very good player in the minors, Steve-O, so who knows?

His minor league record is pretty mediocre if you consider the offensive-heavy leagues he played in and his age relative to the other players.

DougRisk said...

Truth,
By the time he made it to AAA (and it took him long enough) he had a bad OBP and a terrible SO to BB ratio. Also, it wasn't like he was not given a chance in the Majors. He got plenty of ABs and simply had terrible stats.

Still, he was great at Gay Softball.

And, he invented the high five.

Mark said...

Everyone knows that gay men are way over-represented among AIDS patients. And that the whole 10% of the population figure is a myth. I haven't heard it thrown about since the 1990s.

To the people who are complaining about having to fund AIDS research: I sympathize to a point (and I'm gay, and have people who are HIV+ whom I care about deeply!), but does this resentment attach to funding research on other self-inflicted, lifestyle-related illnesses, e.g. those caused by obesity, alcoholism, smoking, etc...? If not, why single out gays?

I do find it annoying that you can call out smokers, alcoholics, fat people, etc... for their self-destructive behavior, but no "right thinking person" ever takes gay men to task for their/our sexual promiscuity.

Chris said...

"Burke's creation of the high five was part of his Herculean mystique. He would flash his magnetic smile and high-five everyone who walked by... a gay activist named Michael J. Smith, appropriated the high five as a defiant symbol of gay pride."

I knew it! Professional team sports are riddled with such homoeroticism. I could never understand why someone would want to envelope themselves in football, baseball, or, god forbid, basketball, when they could train in powerlifting, boxing, or running.

Homer Fobick said...

Simple question: If Glenn Burke or Dave Kopay had been straight, would ANYBODY remember their names?

Anonymous said...

"but does this resentment attach to funding research on other self-inflicted, lifestyle-related illnesses, e.g. those caused by obesity, alcoholism, smoking, etc...?"

Yes, Mark, I think it does. I believe there is great resentment that our entire medical system is burdened by those who are self-indulgent to the point of costing the rest of us a lot of money.

As for research dollars--surely you know people who've never smoked who have suffered with lung cancer, cancer of the tongue or esophagus; surely you know people with type 2 diabetes who aren't heavy (I've two friends with it who are very thin and always have been). Research into curbing the alcoholic's cravings may not just save the alcoholic but the innocents he savages, those family members at home and strangers on the highways.

It's hard to see the sexually promiscuous adult as a victim.

Truth said...

"I could never understand why someone would want to envelope themselves in football, baseball, or, god forbid, basketball, when they could train in powerlifting, boxing, or running."

It's pretty simple actually, some people prefer individual pursuits, some prefer group hobbies.

Truth said...

DougRisk:

Burke was a minor league draftee, who spent 6 years in the minors and came up at 24. This is about right for a High school draftee, as there are 5 levels of minor league baseball. (Short-season rookie A, Mid-A, High-A, Double-A and Triple-A.) H.S. guys who are not phenoms generally make a stop at each one. He was also a lifetime .293 hitter who hit better than .300 at five levels of baseball. He stole bases, but did not hit homeruns (fewer did in the 70's) and his stats are on par with major league rookies.

Is it possible that he was cut for being lousy? of course, but there were worse guys in the 70's who hung around longer.

DougRisk said...

Truth,
His stats in the majors were terrible and he was around for years. He was definitely given a chance.

However, he probably was traded for racist or homophobic (or some other other evil) reasons.

David said...

Far from being a victim of homophobia, it seems he was kept around longer than he should have been because they particularly liked, enjoyed, and appreciated his personality. That grown men would get teary because a mediocre teammate leaves their team indicates Glennie was accepted and much loved. But never expect gratitude from professional fags. Everyone not playing on their team is The Source of All Evil.

Mark said...

"Yes, Mark, I think it does. I believe there is great resentment that our entire medical system is burdened by those who are self-indulgent to the point of costing the rest of us a lot of money."

Fair enough.

"As for research dollars--surely you know people who've never smoked who have suffered with lung cancer, cancer of the tongue or esophagus; surely you know people with type 2 diabetes who aren't heavy (I've two friends with it who are very thin and always have been)."

85% of lung cancer patients are smokers. That number is higher than the percentage of new AIDS patients who are gay men. Twenty-seven percent of new AIDS patients are women, for one.

"Research into curbing the alcoholic's cravings may not just save the alcoholic but the innocents he savages, those family members at home and strangers on the highways.

It's hard to see the sexually promiscuous adult as a victim."

All people who get AIDS are not sexually promiscuous adults. I have a friend whose aunt was diagnosed with HIV. Her husband was on the "down low." It's difficult to see her as anything other than a victim. About 10,800 out of the 40,000 new HIV diagnoses each year affect women. About 14,000 people each year are killed by drunk drivers. Those numbers aren't too dissimilar.

Anonymous said...

"About 14,000 people each year are killed by drunk drivers. "

how many by sober?

http://www.fathersmanifesto.net/dui.htm

http://www.fathersmanifesto.net/womendrivers.htm

Asher said...

I just had dinner with a gay friend of five years. He's only had sex with one guy for the past seventeen.

Jes' sayin'. Also, he's a die-hard Republican, and hates multiculturalism

Anonymous said...

"All people who get AIDS are not sexually promiscuous adults. I have a friend whose aunt was diagnosed with HIV. Her husband was on the "down low." It's difficult to see her as anything other than a victim. About 10,800 out of the 40,000 new HIV diagnoses each year affect women. About 14,000 people each year are killed by drunk drivers. Those numbers aren't too dissimilar."

And I return your "fair enough" to some degree. I do think, for all kinds of reasons, lung cancer would be the recipient of dollars even if it had not been linked to smokers.

Also, I've a feeling that the sympathy for the 40,000 new diagnoses of HIV infection of women is no greater than for the man/men who passed it to her. Most of those women, let's face it, are drug users and/or promiscuous themselves, and part of a subculture most of us in productive society hold in contempt.

Basically, I think the "it's the culture, and not their fault" meme that has plagued this nation since the 1960s has given way to "Dammit, the individual has to take responsibility for his or her actions."

Kylie said...

"To the people who are complaining about having to fund AIDS research: I sympathize to a point (and I'm gay, and have people who are HIV+ whom I care about deeply!), but does this resentment attach to funding research on other self-inflicted, lifestyle-related illnesses, e.g. those caused by obesity, alcoholism, smoking, etc...?"

Among those I've talked to, yes, it's a blanket resentment, not one specific to gays.

"If not, why single out gays?"

Smokers and alcoholics have to give up their unhealthy habits completely. Obese people have to cut back on or give up completely all sorts of tasty food forever to reach and maintain a healthy weight. With gays, though, I think there's a perception that nobody is suggesting they should be celibate, just take reasonable precautions in choosing their partners and practice safe sex.

So of the four categories you list, gays are seen as the ones who have to compromise least in their pursuit of pleasure in order to safeguard their health. Not do to so--especially when the risk is so great for themselves and for others--seems pretty selfish. Which is okay--unless and until you expect others to pay for treating the conditions resulting from your selfishness.

Mark Wethman said...

"So of the four categories you list, gays are seen as the ones who have to compromise least in their pursuit of pleasure in order to safeguard their health."

Good point.