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Hospital Zone Defense
Steve Rushin
April 02, 2001
Oh, doctor! Sports can lead to illness, perhaps even sickness unto sudden death
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April 02, 2001

Hospital Zone Defense

Oh, doctor! Sports can lead to illness, perhaps even sickness unto sudden death

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March Madness, Baseball Fever and Wrestlemania aren't the only sports-specific diseases in circulation this spring. No, there are manifold maladies to inoculate against, so we present, as a public service, this Glossary of Sports Medicine—because what you don't know can hurt you.

Afrodisiac—Any substance that stimulates sexual excitement in Oscar Gamble.

Barrybarry—Catastrophic disease whose victims acquire the personality of Barry Bonds and the dress sense of Barry Melrose, with social consequences similar to those of leprosy.

Belle's palsy—"Trick or treat"-triggered paralysis of the facial nerves, resulting in the permanent inability to smile.

Colonic irrigation—Clinical name for Cleveland Indians pitcher Bartolo Colon's getting sent to the showers.

CyAttica—A pathology, the victims of which deteriorate from great pitchers to grizzled prisoners, often overnight. (Also called Denny McLain's Disease.)

E-4ia—The secret euphoria, shameful joy or schadenfreude felt by reserve infielders for the New York Yankees whenever former second baseman Chuck Knoblauch made a throwing error.

Expendicitis—Ailment of Minnesota Twins owner Carl Pohlad, requiring removal of the vestigial appendage that is his wallet, which is then pried open with the same jaws of life used by emergency rescue personnel to extract accident victims from car wrecks.

Garthritis—Acute inflammation of the rotator cuff, common among batting-practice pitchers forced, in spring training, to throw endless gopher balls to celebrity nitwits like George Clooney, Kevin Costner and Jerry Springer.

Halletosis—Unspeakable morning breath; primary grounds for divorce injustice v. Berry.

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