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What a Bastida!

Staff Reports

Baseball – Evel BastidaIf Inland Empire’s Evel Bastida has any kind of baseball career yet to come, it may not be in the Seattle organization. The Mariners have suspended him for the rest of the minor league season and are pondering whether to release him at season’s end after he poleaxed Lancaster pitcher Josh Kranawetter in the back with his bat following a brushback pitch in the 15th inning. That kicked off a brawl that provoked 16 ejections and suspension of the game. The least of Bastida’s worries is that the Mariners would offer him counseling, or that the Carolina League fined him an undisclosed amount. He could also face felony assault charges for hitting Kranawetter. Sounds to us like he might still have a bright future in the NHL, or perhaps in some other Evil Empire.9 Jerk PointsBasketball – Rhonda MappThings are not right in LA. Already reeling from Kobe-mania, LA basketball took another hit when a former Spark was accused of sexual assault. Now one of her WNMA teammates, Rhonda Mapp, has become the first in the league to be dismissed for a violation of the drug policy. Mapp can’t apply for reinstatement for at least two years. And though the substance is unknown, it must be harsh since pot is not part of the program. Actually, neither is Mapp.5 Jerk PointsFootball – Brent GriffithIf you suspect Eden Prairie police officer and partial team employee Brent Griffith of stealing identities of Vikings, you’re pretty bright. See, Griffith is not only running from the law (of which he’s supposed to be a part), but he’s also been caught red-handed. Griffith’s locker contained credit card applications for Lance Johnstone, a medical bill for Hunter Goodwin, a tax form for Daunte Culpepper, court papers for Denard Walker, and a hotel rewards card for safety Brian Russell. Did we mention the credit card frauddiscovered by Michael Bennet that started this investigation? Griffith may not need that rewards card where he’s going, the rooms are free.4 Jerk PointsHockey – Joe ThorntonAn Ontario prosecutor stayed assault charges against Bruins forward Joe Thornton recently. That doesn’t mean Thornton is innocent in addition to a written apology, Thornton will have to perform what Kevin Gowdey called “a significant period of community service” before he’s let off the hook.”Incidents happen in our lives which we later wish had not happened,” Thorntons statement read. “I apologize for any difficulties which my actions may have caused members of our police force.”So to sum things up, you can hit cops in Ontario and as long as you visit a couple of high schools and can get someone to write an eloquent “I’m sorry” on your behalf, you’ll get away with it. If you’re a hockey player, that is.1 Jerk PointSoccer – Jason CowieIt was a scene that would have made William Ligue proud. Jason Cowie, a 21-year-old Aberdeen fan, was arrested for running onto the pitch and attacking Rangers defender Fernando Ricksen in a recent game between the Scottish rivals. Ricksen is not very popular among the Aberdeen fans because of his kung-fu kick on midfielder Darren Young three years ago, so Cowie must have decided it was time to get even. Cowie later pleaded guilty to two charges of assault. He also admitted breaching the peace and behaving in a racially aggravated manner, and will remain in custody for at leastanother three weeks. And he probably won’t be welcome at any more Rangers games or any more Aberdeen games, for that matter.6 Jerk PointsMisc – Matti NykanenA few weeks ago, we made the mistake of calling Mike Tyson the most pathetic man alive. Actually, that title belongs to retired Finnish ski jumper Matti Mykanen, who has now officially hit rock bottom. The former Olympic champion now faces even more domestic violence charges after allegedly knocking his wife unconscious earlier this month. Nykanen already faces up to 10 years in jail for stabbing his wife during a fight back in February, and is also under investigation for his role in a bar fight that took place a couple months ago. The Nykanens were somehow able to reconcile after the stabbing incident, but after the most recent attack, Mervi Tapola-Nykanen has finally had enough. &quotI have thrown him out for the last time,&quot she told the press.And this is where it really gets sad. According to the Finnish media,Nykanen is now homeless and sleeps in a stable. We can only hope the poor sap gets a roof over his head before the winter, preferably in jail and that he gets some much-needed alcohol rehab.6 Jerk PointsFor more on sports jerks like these, check out http://www.jerkoftheweek.com.


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