Forgive me for that headline, as hyperbole usually isn’t in my wheelhouse, but holy Harry Caray, Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler did a number on the classic Wrigley Field 7th inning stretch on Saturday. Our beloved J-Cutty was on hand at the Friendly Confines to throw out the first pitch and sing “Take me Out to the Ballgame” and it was just plain bad.
Cutler also spent the bottom half of the 7th inning in the booth with Bob Brenly and Len Kasper, and the entire package was just one epic disaster of awkwardness. Ultimately, it’s what I expected from the socially reluctant Cutler, who never seems like he wants to be anywhere. Hell, I thought the cherry on top was when he returned to his seat without the Cubs jersey that he was visibly struggling to button up as he entered the booth.
But hey, not everyone has to be a Cubs fan to appreciate tradition. However, would it be too much of me to ask these celebrities and Cubs fans to simply learn the lyrics to a short song that people have been singing for more than 100 years? I don’t think so. And to answer my own question, no. Cutler wasn’t the worst. Perhaps he was the most uninspired or uninterested, but there have been many far worse. And I have them to punish us all.
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I laughed so very hard watching this on Saturday. It was absolutely delightful how little he wanted to be there.
We’ll start with the legend. Honestly, I’ve always been open with my appreciation for the Cubs’ amazing collection of celebrity fans and their passion for all things Wrigley. I also understand that if a celebrity wants to make an appearance, it’s good for business. But I’ve also always just thought it would be easier and more enjoyable if the Cubs used a video tribute to Harry Caray.
Bill Murray can give a rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” with just mouth farts and I’d call it brilliant, so there’s no point in bringing him into this argument.
In fairness to Mr. Punk, he does offer us a pretty solid rendition here, but he illustrates my point – as all of these entries do – that nobody preps these guys on the correct lyrics. It’s “take me out with the crowd”. WITH, not TO. It’s also Cracker Jack, not Cracker Jacks. Singular. Sorry, it’s just the little things that can drive me the craziest.
As much as I love Pearl Jam, this is on the same level as a bad, drunken best man speech. Well, at least allegedly drunken.
I’ve always had a soft spot for Green Day, but Billy Joe has also always struck me as a guy who is constantly mocking everything. I say this because we can smell our own.
Despite being from St. Louis, Jeff Tweedy is
Judas a Cubs fan, and this rendition by Wilco is just proof that the group effort takes practice. Also, you’re a world famous rock band, so you should know how microphones work.
Before we get into the really awful Wrigley appearances, I want to show some respect for two truly terrible performances of “Ballgame” at other venues. First is this Toledo Mudhens performance by Bret Michaels.
And this Toronto Blue Jays rendition by American Idol punchline William Hung. This is clearly the worst thing ever, but I’m trying to focus on Wrigley.
I expect this from Mr. T, which is precisely why he shouldn't be doing this.
(Bonus point for including Mike Wilbon patting himself on the back for throwing out a first pitch at Wrigley.)
The story to this classic tale shouldn’t surprise anyone – Kid Rock was allegedly super high when he showed up and comedian Jeff Garlin tried to give him some pointers. Yeah, that worked.
I’m biased against everything Piven because he’s like a walking Axe Body Spray commercial.
Fat Tony started if off with authority and then might as well have yelled, “LINE!”
We’re through the looking glass. Is this the most terrible rendition?
Or is it this one? I say it’s Ozzy here, and I’d love to meet the Cubs employee who laughed his or her ass off when the Osbournes agreed to do this.
And there are so many more. Feel free to angrily remind me any that I’ve excluded.