Play skillfully with a loud noise.
Carl Everett is a man of conviction. As an Apostolic Christian, he believes that the Bible, interpreted literally, is the infallible authority on all matters. As the cocksure centerfielder for the Boston Red Sox he believes in taking on pitchers and questions alike with the same absolute assuredness. The man plays and talks with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer. Just ask.
Interleague play? "Don't like it," Everett responds. "They only have it because of two teams [the New York Mets and the New York Yankees]. It's all about the money." Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter? "Not a star." The Mets, one of his former teams? "All those [management] people are hypocrites and idiots." The Atlanta Braves' starting pitchers? "You can run on them all day." Big cities? "Hate 'em. I need space." American League baseball? "Boring." Dinosaurs? "Didn't exist."
Uh, come again?
"God created the sun, the stars, the heavens and the earth, and then made Adam and Eve," Everett said last Friday, before the Red Sox lost two of three in Atlanta. "The Bible never says anything about dinosaurs. You can't say there were dinosaurs when you never saw them. Someone actually saw Adam and Eve. No one ever saw a Tyrannosaurus rex."
What about dinosaur bones?
"Made by man," he says.
Everett has trouble, too, with the idea of man actually walking on the moon. After first rejecting the notion, he concedes, "Yeah, that could have happened. It's possible. That is something you could prove. You can't prove dinosaurs ever existed. I feel it's far-fetched."
Listen up, everybody. Everett is raising a ruckus around baseball. It's not just that at age 29—having never batted 500 times in a season, having been passed around like a Christmas fruitcake among five organizations and having attained such a dark reputation in baseball that his teammates call him Dr. Evil—Everett has emerged as one of the game's most dangerous clutch hitters. It's also that in a clich�-riddled, "give-110%-and-take-'em-one-day-at-a-time" profession, Everett is unflinchingly honest. The man is a walking, talking blunt instrument.
A conversation with Everett can go in any direction and can bludgeon anyone who's the least bit sensitive. Even teammates take precautions, lest Everett—as he did last week on the bench at Pro Player Stadium, home of the Florida Marlins—launch into a 20-minute disquisition on the balk rule. "My locker is next to his," shortstop Nomar Garcia-parra says, "so I try not to get into long conversations with him. I'll just say, 'Uh, gotta go, Carl.' "