According to the two veteran clubhouse insiders interviewed by The News, it wouldn’t be unusual for players to imbibe, even during games.
According to one of the insiders, Jason Giambi and Roger Clemens would routinely drink beer on the dugout bench when they played for the Yankees, passing back and forth what Giambi called his “protein shake,” code for a cup of beer, the source said.
I really don’t like this Daily News article as it makes it out to be something that everybody does even though that is almost not the truth. Perhaps it is regular for one or two players on each team to be doing it, but it seems highly unlikely that Derek Jeter would partake or even approve of this. Remember, we are not talking about players drinking in the clubhouse, we are talking players drinking in the dugouts.
This seems like a remnant of past times that has somehow hung on with a few players today. But times have changed. Players are no longer paid wages that make it hard to earn a decent living. They make millions these days and with more money should come more responsibility. Baseball doesn’t have to be a 365-day thing, but it should be taken more seriously and just because something like this used to be the norm doesn’t mean it should fly these days.
I am disappointed to hear that Giambi and Clemens partook in beers on the bench. However, this probably says more about Joe Torre than it does about his players. Yes, they must take personal responsibility, but Torre shouldn’t have been asleep at the wheel either. He was a great manager, but it is becoming clearer that in the end he was really just phoning it in.