Listen, before you judge this story – have you ever been named the American League Rookie of the Year? If you have, well, good job, I’m happy for you. If not, then you should try to be better next time around.
Now, a fellow named Joe Charboneau did win the award in 1980, when he hit 23 home runs and slashed .289/.358/.488 for the 1980 Cleveland Indians. Pretty decent year, overall.
However, that was about it. Charboneau holds the record for the fewest career games played for a Major League Rookie of the Year, as he wrapped things up after the 1982 season with a total of 201 games played. 131 of those were in 1980.
So this is where things get interesting. I’d say all of that can be forgiven, as from the sounds of things, Charboneau was also fun as fuck. Jay Johnstone named him to his “All Crazy Team” in his Temporary Insanity book, as apparently Charboneau removed a tattoo with a razor blade, which is definitely not an un-crazy way to do it.
He also enjoyed dying his hair a bunch of unnatural colours (an early Dennis Rodman?), he could open beer bottles with his eye socket (that shit ain’t easy), and he liked to drink beer with a straw through his nose, which is really just a more economical and efficient way of drinking, when you think about it.
To Joe Charboneau, I say this:
Thank you for being a friend.
Traveled down a road and back again.
Your heart is true, you’re a pal and a confidant.