Cal Ripken was on NPR this afternoon, promoting his new book, Get in the Game: 8 Elements of Perseverance That Make the Difference. The host, Neal Conan (who kinda used to work for Ripken), asked the Hall of Fame shortstop a question that had been submitted by a reader.
The reader wanted to know the truth behind a rumor that he said had been floating around Baltimore for years: that the Orioles once canceled a night game against the Mariners because Ripken was M.I.A. and the team didn’t want his consecutive games played streak to come to an end.
What the reader didn’t say, and what Conan presumably didn’t know, is that the rumor is much juicier than that. From ESPN:
Consider Cal’s streak, which according to one outlandish rumor was supposedly kept alive by a supposed fake power outage at Camden Yards after the Iron Man supposedly was arrested for supposedly beating up Kevin Costner after supposedly catching the actor supposedly sleeping with his wife. The rumor spread enough that Costner even went on the radio to deny it.
Ripken answered the question without alluding to Costner. He called the rumor bogus and said he was at the park that night and even warmed up on the infield. And, for what it’s worth, Snopes.com agrees with Ripken’s account.
There’s no credible evidence to support the story about Ripken and Costner. Still, I think I’m going to choose to believe that story, because I love the idea of Ripken beating the snot out of Kevin Costner. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of Kevin Costner the actor. He gave us Field of Dreams and Bull Durham and for that I owe him a huge debt. But Kevin Costner the human being … eeeww.
You can listen to the Ripken interview here.