9.04.2009

Mark McGwire, 1992 Studio

Name: Mark McGwire
Teams: Oakland A's, Jefferson Davis Middle School Eagles
Positions: First base, Closer, P.E. coach
Value of card: $10 tab at Sha-BOOMs
Key 1991 stat: Three people thrown from Jet-Skis
Westbound & Down: HBO had a hit on its hands in 2009 with "Eastbound & Down." The six-episode comedy series following Kenny Powers, a once-great major league closer forced to return to his alma-mater middle school to coach P.E. after being shamed into leaving the game he loved. Fans of the show number in thousands, but few know creator and star Danny McBride patterned his character after an early 1990s Mark McGwire. The greasy mullet, the creepy facial hair, the cutoff sleeves and the unmeasurable ego all were McGwire's before they were Powers'. McBride even integrated a few circa 1991 McGwire quotes into his scripts: "I'm a bulletproof tiger"; "Fundamentals are the crutch of the talentless"; "Undaunted, I knew the game was mine to win. Just like in life, all of successes depend on me. I'm the man who has the bat (ball); I'm the man who can swing (throw) it faster than (expletive). So that is why I am better than everyone in the world. Kiss my (expletive) and suck my (expletive), everyone."

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