Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Sportsthodoxy Guide to Yuni and Uni

Today, the Philadelphia Phillies took one step closer to missing the playoffs by signing reputed shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt to a minor-league deal. This wouldn’t be a big deal, however, if it A)weren’t the Phillies, who have a habit of giving scads of playing time to guys who sign minor-league deals and B)weren’t Yuniesky Betancourt, who is so unspeakably awful as a baseball player that Joe Posnanski devoted several thousand words that would otherwise have been devoted to extolling the virtues of Bruce Springsteen to trying to come up with one single positive thing about having Betancourt as your shortstop. 
You don’t need a Beautiful Mind to figure out that this adds up to “oh, crap” for the Philly faithful. But for those of you who still don’t believe that this is worth worrying about, we here at Sportsthodoxy are happy to provide a comparison/contrast between Yuni and “Uni”, the baby unicorn from the late, lamented Dungeons & Dragons cartoon. Hang on to your batting gloves and bullywugs, it’s going to be a wild ride:

Yuni Betancourt
“Uni” the Unicorn
Mythical attribute is...
...his ability to play a decent shortstop
...the fact that he’s a unicorn
Horribly annoying when he...
...botches multiple routine plays, costing your team a run
...gets captured every episode and makes that annoying bleating sound. You know the one, like a sheep gargling Drano
Looks great from a distance, but when you get close you realize...
...he’s built like Matt Stairs
...he looks like a goat
Constantly needs to be rescued by...
...the Kansas City Royals, though they may finally have gotten tired of his shtick
...”Bobby”, the child barbarian with a magical club that makes earthquakes and no sense that he’s running around in a fur version of Sean Connery’s Zardoz outfit
Originally played for...
...Dungeon Master
Is mortally terrified of....
...hard ground balls and the curve low and away
...Venger. And possibly Tiamat.
Occasionally makes you forget how awful he is by...
...having a multi-homer game
...doing some kind of weird unicorny-magicky thing or other. 
Is called “Yuni/Uni” because...
“Yuniesky” sounds like a Russian spy in a Le Carre novel and “Y-Bet” sounds like a public service ad.
“Uni” is exactly the sort of abbreviation for “Unicorn” you’d expect a nine year old kid with a magic club to come up with.
Worst professional moment was...
...getting released by the Royals. Or possibly getting fined by the Royals. 
...having his horn magically stolen by an evil wizard who stored it in an idol with all the horns he’d stolen from the other unicorns, and with which he was going to fight Venger, and....err. Yeah. Gonna stop right here and pretend that never happened.
Could still recover and...
...become a league-average bench bat with multi-position versatility
...get a gritty reboot on Cartoon Network and then get canceled after one season like Thundercats did.
Will become a fan favorite in Philly if...
...he hits
...he ends up on a hoagie roll with Whiz, mushrooms, onions and sweet peppers
Is terrible at shortstop because...
...he’s overweight, has no range, doesn’t seem interested half the time, and shows bad instincts
...is a quadruped.

Me, I'd take the unicorn. And I'd bat him sixth.
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