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Wait, Who Was Jason Kendall Talking About?

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The long list of baseball code words added another entry last night when Brewers catcher Jason Kendall repeatedly, wantonly and vindictively began referring to Pirates pitching coach Joe Kerrigan as "Dave Kerwin," or possibly "Dave Kurwin" or "Dave Kirwan." I mean, of all the no-good rotten things to call a baseball lifer in the heat of battle. Who needs "mutha$&%^ing ^#*$#&*" when you can just make up a fake name that sounds like that of a high school biology teacher from Topeka? ↵

↵Anyhow, in this particular game, there was a melee, and Kerrigan was one of the restrainers while Kendall was one of the restrainees, and words were exchanged, and the next thing you know, Kendall was speaking in tongues. ↵

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↵⇥"It was fine until Dave Kerwin," Kendall said, referring to Kerrigan. Kendall continued to call Kerrigan by that incorrect name -- seemingly on purpose -- even after being promptly corrected.
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↵⇥"I can take a lot, but I'm not going to get yelled at," he continued. "Dave Kerwin started yelling at me...."
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↵⇥When asked what he thought made Kerrigan so mad, Kendall responded: "I don't know. Dave Kerwin? I have no idea." ↵⇥

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↵Media members corrected him on the exact name of his antagonist; "Yeah, Dave Kurwin, whatever his name is," Kendall responded, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. ↵

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↵Now, I have to imagine there was an origin, an inspiration of this Dave Kerwin or Dave Kurwin name, some nogoodnik from deep in Kendall's past who became his own Platonic ideal of bad sportsmanship. But using my primary tool of journalistic research--Google--I can't find bloody well anything about Kerwin, or Kurwin, or whoever the hell he was talking about. There's this one guy named Dave Kerwin who has a blog "dedicated to noting God's movement in my life and my random nonsensical thoughts, enjoy!" and sure, it's possible that Kendall was checking it out on his BlackBerry from the dugout just before the melee, but every MLB catcher I've ever met only reads random nonsensical blogs during afternoon games. ↵

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↵There's Australian television and radio host Dave Kirwan, a former weekend anchor for the Weather Channel, who "is the only Australian radio announcer in New York City, the number one media market in the USA, being a DJ on CBS owned FM radio station 923-KROCK," according to Wikipedia. Look, he even has his own Web page! But I happen to know for a fact that Kendall hates KROCK, due to some miscreants writing that exact phrase on his bicycle with sparkly paint a few years back. ↵

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↵Some other bloke named Dave Kirwan is an award-winning cartoonist and illustrator whose doodles "have promoted everything from cell phones to garden supplies, mattresses to financial institutions, broadcast stations to radial tire" and who also happens to be "Grand Sheik of the Busy Bodies, Tent #60, a local chapter of the Sons of the Desert, an international Laurel and Hardy appreciation society." And by now, everyone knows Kendall is more Marx Brothers than Laurel and Hardy. ↵

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↵Then there's Dave Kirwin the Minnesota home inspector, who, along with Rachel and Diedre is waiting to talk to you, no answering machines, no telephone tag. Near as I can figure, Kendall's dad, Fred, spent a year managing the South Bend Silver Hawks in 1995, back when Dave Kirwin was just starting out, and maybe he took a side trip to Minnesota when Kirwin and Rachel or Diedre gave him bad advice about removing termites from crawl spaces, and ever since then "Dave Kirwin!" has been like invoking the name of the devil in the Kendall household. Either that, or Jason Kendall's just a weird fella. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.