Anthony Rizzo Tweets his HBP stats to Britney Spears



Superstar athletes are supposed to only make news by what they do on the field; never with what they say. That’s an unwritten rule of major league sports, and at some clubs it’s probably actually a written rule.

Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo made the home pages a few days ago with this Tweet referencing pop sensation Britney Spears.

The very clever, less than 140 character offering followed up on Rizzo’s #ThugLife Instagram post featuring jay-walking teammate Kris Bryant. It played a clip of the Geto Boys (that’s Geto Boys, NOT Geto Boyz, because people with actual street cred haven’t pluralized words with Zs since 2001) hit song “Damn It Feels Good To Be A Gangsta.”

These days, social media provides the opportunity for athletes to showcase their actual personalities. Press conferences and post/pregame media opportunities stifle them. In those situations, it’s all about corporate culture.

So when I had the chance to interview Rizzo on Saturday, when he made a surprise appearance at Nike Train Chicago, the Diamond Fit session, I knew what question I had to ask first.

anthony rizzo

Naturally, I asked him if Britney Spears had responded to his Tweet. As of press time she had not.

Of course, Twitter is a strange beast when it comes to the @ mention game. Everyone who uses the micro-blogging platform knows this all too well. Using the @ is a way to strike up a conversation with somebody. It’s also used just to simply acknowledge or reference them, without any reasonable expectation of a response. I’m sure Rizzo isn’t all that concerned with whether or not he gets a response from Spears. Doing his part to win the NL Central is what he’s most likely concerned about at this point.

I also asked Rizzo which platform he prefers- Twitter or Instagram. I didn’t get an answer.

But I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t ask.


(Obligatory screen grab that must accompany any and all mentions of the Britney Spears hit “Hit me baby one more time.” Wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t include this)

The conversation went back to the elite level training program with baseball drills and strength moves curated by Nike Master Trainers. Participants in the intensive two-hour workout were pleasantly surprised by Rizzo and his training tips. It was quite a thrill for them!

Here’s the audio of Rizzo and Cubs strength Coach Tim Buss addressing those who took part in the workout.

For more on Nike Train Chicago, and greater detail on the session with Chicago Bears DB Sherrick McMannus, go here. To see what it’s like to partake in the intense workout, you’ll want to read this.

You probably know this already, but for those who don’t, Rizzo currently leads Major League Baseball in hit by pitches. He’s been plunked 13 times.

I asked him  what he does to try and recover faster getting pegged, or if there even is a way to heal quicker from such setbacks.

“Exercise, keep the blood flowing,” he said.

“The more you can do that, the more well being you’re going to have, whether you’re just trying to recover from that, or you’re just trying to stay fit.”

Rizzo is currently second among NL first basemen in All-Star voting; with an up to the minute slash line of .315/.440/.565. So maybe those numbers are impressive enough to get a re-tweet or a “favorite” from Britney Spears.


(obligatory racy photo of Ms. Spears. Again, wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t include this)

Or more likely, whatever press agent is running the Twitter account of Britney Spears for her.

We do know that she’s into sports though.

Paul M. Banks owns, operates and writes The Sports, which is partnered with Fox Sports Digital. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, currently contributes to the Chicago Tribune RedEye edition. He also appears regularly on numerous sports talk radio stations all across the country.

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