Mike Leake of the Cincinnati Reds is a wonderfully gifted pitcher.
God blessed him with thunder in his right-arm and the ability to
break off knee-buckling curves balls. Apparently, Leake got the
short end of the stick when it came to gray matter.
On Monday afternoon, Leake was arrested for allegedly stealing
six shirts valued at $59.88 from a Macy's department store in
downtown Cincinnati. In his second year, Leake is making a cool,
$425,000. Not bad for a 23-year old kid who is less than two years
removed from Arizona State. Perhaps, he was just short on cash,
or had spent most of his money bailing out his friends on the
Whatever the case, Leake is in a world of trouble. Oh, he won't get
anywhere near the 6 months in jail that goes with a conviction of that
crime, but how is he ever going to explain why he took the security
tags off six shirts and walked out of the store. He couldn't use the
"Oh, I forget that I put them in my bag and walked out", excuse.
Not when store cameras showed him peeling off the sensor tags.
In a press release, Leake apologized "for this distraction" but said
nothing about his Pac-Man Jones-like stupidity, who coincidentally,
plays for the Bengals now. The city's NFL team, as you may know,
leads the free-world in player arrests with 17 over the last four years.
Or is it 18? Whatever, it's not important, and I can't keep track
Last year, Leake became just the 21st player in major league baseball
history to be drafted and go straight to the show without having spent a
day in the minors. In 2010, he had an immediate impact, going 8-4 to help
the Reds win the NL Central. Leake is 2 and 0 so far this season. Why
in the world would he do such a stupid thing? Did he channel his inner
Lindsay Lohan and feel daring? Did he want to get on TMZ? At least
he didn't use the "do you know who I am?" thing to try to shield him
In their own press release, the Cincinnati Reds said they "don't condone
this type of behavior. (Does anybody?). And they all but said that Leake
is a complete moron, which he really must be. I mean, he could've gone
to the store manager and said, "Hey, can I do a card signing in exchange
for these shirts." Or he could've signed up for a Macy's credit card
with the chance to get 10% off immediately. Leake should've gone the
twitter route and posted, "@Macy's downtown mall. Outa cash.
Can somebody by me 6 t-shirts quick?" You just know some star-struck,
celebrity obsessed fan would've been there sooner than Pete Rose's
next dye job, to pick up the tab.
Leake's attorney's said that the Reds pitcher will get to tell his side of
story in court, but is staying mum for now. Perhaps, it was all part of
a prank with his teammates, which is not unheard of in the world of
baseball. Whatever the case, this much is certain, the Cincinnati Bengals
are off the hook for a few days.