Steve Lyons (baseball), Talk:Steve Lyons (baseball)
Stephen John Lyons
(born June 3
) is a former Major League Baseball
player and a television sportscaster
. He is of French and Irish decent.
He was initially an outfielder
and third baseman
, but found a niche as a utility player. He played 8 seasons in the majors, from 1985
, during which he was released a number of times. After his retirement, he became a television baseball commentator.
Lyons was born in Tacoma, Washington
, and grew up in Eugene
and Beaverton, Oregon
. He graduated from Beaverton High School
, and attended Oregon State
on a partial baseball scholarship
. After his junior year, Lyons was a first round draft pick
(19th overall) by the Boston Red Sox
Lyons made his major league debut in April 1985
at age 24.
He was traded to the Chicago White Sox
for aging Hall of Fame
pitcher Tom Seaver
in June 1986
. After 5+ seasons with the White Sox
, he returned to the Red Sox
. In 1992
, his playing time diminished as he shuffled from the Atlanta Braves
to the Montreal Expos
and back to the Red Sox
for a third time. In 1993
Lyons was with the Chicago Cubs
during spring training, and was picked up once again by the Red Sox
. This was his final season as a player.
Lyons has the rare distinction of having played at all 9 positions on the field at the major league level, although in a spring training game. Interestingly, however, his fielding percentage at every position at which he played more than 6 games lifetime was lower than the league average, and his range was similarly limited. After he made 25 errors in 128 games at third base in 1988
, no team ever played him more than 28 games at the position in a season.
He also appeared as a designated hitter and pinch hitter. He appeared twice as a pitcher in relief, giving up 4 hits, 4 walks, and 1 run in 3 innings (for a 3.00 ERA).
His career batting totals included a .252 batting average, 19 home runs, and 196 RBI.
Lyons' colorful personality earned him the nickname "Psycho." He was known for such eccentricities as playing tic-tac-toe
with his spikes in the infield dirt during games.
His most remembered incident occurred at Tiger Stadium
on a Monday night in 1990
. In a televised game played on July 16
, he created a stir that was replayed countless times. After sliding headfirst into first base to beat out a bunt hit, Lyons dropped his baseball pants to empty the dirt out and brush off his shirttail. After a few seconds (and a reaction from the crowd of over 14,000), he realized what he had just done and quickly pulled them up, humorously embarrassed. Although wearing sliding shorts under his White Sox
uniform, this incident earned him another nickname, "Moon Man" Lyons. At the end of the inning, women in the stands waved dollar bills at him as he came to the dugout.
And the jokes began. cquote|No one, had ever dropped his drawers on the field. Not Wally Moon
. Not Blue Moon Odom
. Not even Heinie wrote one columnist. Within 24 hours of the "exposure," he received more exposure than he'd gotten his entire career: seven live television and approximately 20 radio interviews.
Lyons himself once stated:
cquote|We've got this pitcher, Melido Perez
, who earlier this month pitched a no-hitter, and I'll guarantee you he didn't do two live television shots afterwards. I pull my pants down, and I do seven. Something's pretty skewed toward the zany in this
main|Major League Baseball on
After his retirement from the playing field, Lyons became a color commentator
for Fox Sports
' MLB coverage in 1996
, working first in a studio pregame show (with Chip Caray
and Keith Olbermann
) and later on game coverage (usually with Thom Brennaman
). He called several Division Series
and League Championship Series
telecasts for the network.
Lyons was fired by Fox Sports on October 14
for making ethnically insensitive comments during his broadcast of a 2006 postseason game.
He remains the main color commentator for the Los Angeles Dodgers
on FSN Prime Ticket
Insensitive remarks while broadcasting
Lyons maligned outfielder Shawn Green
, who is Jewish
, for sitting out a game on Yom Kippur
, saying: cquote|He’s not even a practicing Jew. He didn’t marry a Jewish girl. And from what I understand, he never had a bar mitzvah
, which is unfortunate because he doesn’t get the Lyons was suspended briefly without pay after his remarks, and the network apologized for Lyons' comments, though Lyons never made an on-air apology.
In August 2006
, while working an Angels
game, Lyons discussed Yankees' catcher Sal Fasano
, and the fact that he had to shave his moustache to accommodate owner George Steinbrenner
's grooming code. Responding to a comment by his fellow Fox sportscaster about how one doesn't want to cross Fasano, Lyons replied: cquote|Well, you know Fasano is the type of guy "who knows a guy that knows a
Lyons and fellow sportscaster Thom Brennaman
made fun of a 64-year-old New York Mets
fan wearing an unusual device over his eyes at a game during Game 1 of the 2006 National League Division Series
between the Mets
, with Lyons saying: cquote|He's got a digital camera stuck to his The man turned out to be nearly blind
, except for limited peripheral vision in one eye, and this headgear were special glasses (a "JORDY
," a magnifying device) that allowed him limited vision with which to see the game. Brennaman later apologized to the man and his family on-air during Game 3 of the series.http://www.usatoday.com/sports/baseball/2006-10-14-fox-lyons_x.htm?POE=SPOISVA
During their broadcast of Game 3 of the 2006 American League Championship Series
, broadcast colleague Lou Piniella
made an analogy involving the luck of finding a wallet, and then briefly used a couple of Spanish
phrases. Lyons responded by saying that Piniella was "hablaing Espanol" -- butchering the conjugation for the Spanish phrase "to speak" -- and added, cquote|I still can't find my wallet. I don't understand him, and I don't want to sit close to him
On October 13
, FOX fired Lyons for making the above remarks, which FOX determined to be racially insensitive, during Game 3 of the American League Championship Series
Lyons was replaced for the last game of the series by Los Angeles Angels
announcer Jose Mota
. Lou Piniella later stated that he thought that Lyons was just "kidding" and that Lyons was, per Piniella's experience, not bigoted.
On October 16
, the Dodgers announced that they would keep Lyons as a commentator for their road games. The team said that they gave Lyons probationary guidelines and that he would undergo diversity training
Was named the worst sportscaster on TV by Giant Magazine in October, 2006. http://www.giantmag.com/2006/10/tv/whos-the-worst-sportscaster-on-tv/
Lyons wrote an autobiography
titled Steve Lyons: PSYCHOanalysis
that was published in 2001
. (ISBN 1-58261-360-5).
*http://www.sportsbusinessnews.com/_news/news_352132.php SBN's take on Steve “Psycho” Lyons
– Finally Where He Belongs, on the Outside Looking In
*http://www.sportsbusinessnews.com/_news/news_352331.php SBN's take On Steve "Psycho" Lyons
- He was Warned and he Paid the Price
*http://www.sportstricities.com/sportstc/24hour/story/3394738p-12481281c.html Fox fires Lyons for insensitive comment
- Online petition to get Steve Lyons his Fox commentator's job back
*http://www.sermons.org/illustrations/a/abandon.htm July 16, 1990
Pants in Detroit
*http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0529173/ Steve Lyons IMDB
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