Seinfeld: What's The Deal With Its Baseball Obsession?
Now that idiot owners have decided to hold a major league baseball season, Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld must be stocking up on their peanuts and Cracker Jack. Who loves baseball more than these guys?
Before there was a Seinfeld, David’s relationship with the original (Kenny) Kramer was fueled by their mutual Yankee fandom. That Kramer delighted in the comic’s not-stop kvetching about owner George Steinbrenner. David brought both his Kramer friendship and Steinbrenner loathing to the show.
Yankee fandom made Larry an unlikely creative partner for Jerry, given his passion for the crosstown Mets. The Mets have returned the love, hosting a Seinfeld Night in 2019 in honor of the show’s 30th anniversary. There were even rumors that Jerry might be interested in buying the team, but he shot down that noise on 60 Minutes:
So how could Seinfeld not be obsessed with baseball? Here are ComedyNerd’s 5 favorite times that David and Seinfeld wove the national pastime into the show.
I’m Keith Hernandez
Jerry is infatuated with his new best pal, Hernandez, the one-time NL MVP and Mets legend -- that is, until he breaks a date with Jerry to go out with Elaine.
Memorable for Hernandez’s self-pep talk while getting up the nerve to smooch Elaine: “Go ahead, kiss her. I’m a baseball player, dammit!”
Opposite Day lands George a job with the Yankees
George doesn’t want to blow an interview for his dream job, so he does the opposite of whatever his natural instincts tell him to do. When meeting Steinbrenner, George ignores his impulse to suck up and instead blasts him with both barrels:
“In the past 20 years, you have caused myself and the city of New York a good deal of distress as we have watched you take our beloved Yankees and reduce them to a laughingstock, all for the glorification of your massive ego.”
“Hire this man!”
Despite George’s opinion that Kramer’s entire life is a fantasy camp, Kramer heads to Florida for a chance to play with Yankee legends. After throwing some inside heat to Joe Pepitone, Kramer starts a brawl among the campers and aging Yankee greats. And in the heat of the melee? “I punched Mickey Mantle in the mouth!”
Kramer goes to Mantle’s restaurant to apologize, where he’s thrown out on his fantasy-camp ass.
The second spitter
While Jerry and Elaine both have crushes on Keith Hernandez, Kramer and Newman hate the guy.
The two goofs allege that Hernandez spit on Newman, and in a classic Seinfeld moment, Jerry breaks down the logical flaws in the entire incident, JFK-style. Who are you going to believe, Newman or the immutable laws of physics?
Jerry’s Mets want to hire George away from Larry David’s beloved Yankees, but whatever George does, he can’t get fired. He at least figures out some pretty entertaining ways to try to get the boot, including smearing strawberry juice all over an authentic Babe Ruth uniform and donning a nude-colored bodysuit for a streaking exhibition around Yankee Stadium.
George doesn’t get canned but he does become a cult favorite among fans who chant “Bodysuit Man!”
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Top image: Columbia Pictures Television