The dangers present when sportswriters veer off-track and discuss music, movies, politics and other pop-culture ephemera are immense and well chronicled.
In his always-informative "Under the Knife" column yesterday, Baseball Prospectus's Will Carroll had this quick note, apropos of nada: "I don't care, Radiohead's "The Bends" is still my favorite album of theirs. It just gets better and better."
There are four things wrong with this statement, none of which has to do with "The Bends" being Radiohead's best album (that's a true story).
1) These little throwaway comments in the "Notes" sections at the end of columns are a little too Larry King.
2) No one cares what Will Carroll's ranking of Radiohead albums is. No one's waiting with baited breath for today's column to see how Kid A stacks up. Shit like this is self-indulgent and annoying. That's what blogs are for.
3) "The Bends" does not, in fact, get "better and better." It has stayed exactly the same since it was first released in 1995.
4) Carroll starts the sentence with "I don't care..." which implies that he's responding to some current, hot-button ongoing debate on the topic. Maybe some frisky BP reader e-mailed Carroll, "Fuck you and all you Bends-heads, Will! "OK Computer" is the best thing Radiohead has ever done," and this was Carroll's response. But we don't know that.
Sportswriters everywhere, I implore you, admire Peter Gammons for what he's meant to the game of baseball, but do not emulate his off-topic tomfoolery.