Brian Dawkins Scares The Crap Out Of Phillies Prospects; But In A Productive Way
By John Stolnis
This is the Brian Dawkins we remember. The guy who could get kinda scary when he wanted to be.
Now, imagine being a young, impressionable minor league baseball player with that unchained wild beast of a man coming at you, with all the fire and righteous rage in his heart, screaming at you about what it’s like to be a professional athlete in Philadelphia.
Yeah, I’d wet my pants too.
On Thursday, worlds collided as Eagles great Brian Dawkins visited with a collection of Phillies prospects to talk about the expectations of playing in a city like Philadelphia, and most importantly, about the rabid fan-base that has been known to swallow certain players whole and spit out their bones.
Just ask Donovan McNabb.
Aspiring Major Leaguers Cody Asche, Zach Collier, Tommy Joseph, Ethan Martin, Adam Morgan, Cameron Rupp and Kyle Simon were all invited to the sports complex for the Phils’ Prospect Education Program this week, a four-day program that contained various seminars with Phillies employees and former players.
And hey, why not throw in a future NFL Hall of Fame safety who scares the bejeezus out of everybody, just for kicks and giggles?
Of course, Dawkins likely didn’t have the eye black under his eyes, his football pads, or the nasty snarl he used to maim other human beings out on the football field. He was likely dressed in a suit that costs more than my house, dressed to the nines, in his kindly, soft-spoken voice, speaking intelligently about things in the world like he normally does now that he’s a retired man-killer.
September 30, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Retired Philadelphia Eagles Brian Dawkins runs onto the field prior to the game against the New York Giants at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey G. Pittenger-USA TODAY Sports
It’s entirely possible Dawkins wasn’t there to kill someone.
The appearance of a former Eagles great was certainly an unusual site to see at Citizens Bank Park. Normally, synergy between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Philadelphia Phillies is about as frequent as an Israeli-Palestinian peace workshop.
In fact, it’s astonishing Ruben Amaro didn’t pull off a trade for Justin Upton at 1:25pm ET on Thursday, simply to spite Jeff Lurie and the Chip Kelly Welcoming Committee.
Sure, the “healthy competitiveness” between the two most popular sports franchises in Philadelphia has never really been acknowledged by either organization, but it’s there. Everyone knows it’s there.
One wonders just what kind of advice or information Dawkins was able to share with the seven Phillies prospects in attendance. And while B-Dawk is revered like no athlete before in the city’s history, his inclusion in the Prospect Education Program was, well let’s face it, kinda weird.
Next up, Brian Dawkins will head over to Andrew Bynum’s house for a brief “motivational” discussion, aimed at getting the injured center to, you know, actually play basketball sometime this year.
Rumor has it it will not involve a two-by-four and a step-ladder.
And even though Bynum is about a foot taller than him, my money is still on Dawkins to kick a little ass if need be.
After all, you can’t teach crazy.