Dwight Gooden has been hired as the senior vice president of the independent league Newark Bears. I’m not trying to tell the Newark Bears how to go about doing their business, but I have to question their vetting process.
I know what you’re thinking: “So, he had some substance abuse problems during his playing days but that was years ago.”
Not so fast. To wit, via Wikipedia (because I’m a lazy bastard and it’s not like Wikipedia has ever had any incorrect information on it):
Gooden’s legal problems did not end with his career. On February 20, 2002, Gooden was arrested in his native Tampa and charged with driving while intoxicated, having an open container of alcohol in his vehicle, and driving with a suspended license. He was arrested again in January 2003 for driving with a suspended license.
On March 12, 2005, Gooden was arrested in Tampa, Florida for punching his girlfriend after she threw a telephone at his head. He was released two days later on a misdemeanor battery charge.
Troubles continued to mount for the former star when, on August 23, 2005, he drove away from a traffic stop in Tampa, after being pulled over for driving erratically. He gave the officer his driver’s license, twice refused to leave his car, then drove away. The officer remarked in his report that Gooden’s eyes were glassy and bloodshot, his speech was slurred, and a “strong” odor of alcohol was present on him. Three days after the traffic stop, Gooden turned himself in to police.
Gooden was again arrested in March 2006 for violating his probation, after he appeared intoxicated with cocaine at a scheduled meeting with his probation officer, David R. Stec. He chose prison over extended probation, perhaps in the hope that incarceration would separate him from the temptations of his addiction. He entered prison on April 17, 2006. On May 31, Gooden said in an interview from prison, “I can’t come back here. [...] I’d rather get shot than come back here. [...] If I don’t get the message this time, I never will.” Gooden was released from prison November 9, 2006, after nearly seven months’ incarceration, and was not placed on further probation.
Well, I guess it has been nearly three years since he was released from prison and everyone deserves a second third fourth fifth sixth seventh chance, right? Further, I’m sure the Newark Bears have taken all the necessary precautions to ensure that Gooden is kept on the straight and narrow.
He joins former Yankees teammate Tim Raines, who is the Bears’ manager.
Wha? Tim Raines? The same Tim Raines who claims to have spent more than $40,000 on cocaine during the 1982 season and admitted he carried it in his hip pocket and slid headfirst during games so he didn’t have to leave the shit in his locker?
Brilliant! Simply brilliant work there, Newark Bears. You guys are like the Wikipedia of minor league baseball.
Gooden back in baseball [ESPN]