SI.com - Rodney Velardi, the manager of Atlantic Cape Community College in New Jersey, resigned from his role as the program’s coach after 13 seasons.
Velardi’s resignation came on May 4, nearly two weeks removed from an 11–4 loss to Rowan College Gloucester County in which two of his players had illegal communication devices found in their helmets.
If you ain't cheatin' then you ain't tryin'. And old Rodney Velardi's team was trying their asses off.
A few weeks back his players were caught wearing communication devices in their helmets in order to steal signs. The act of stealing signs is as old as baseball itself but the innovation this man used is something that should be featured in one of those real men of genius Bud Light commercials.
Am I still allowed to like those old commercials or will an angry Kid Rock show up at my front door?
Anyway, they were using a camera in center field to watch the catcher and then relaying the pitches into the hitter's helmet via a speaker. Unfortunately for Rodney and the Atlantic Cape Buccaneers, one of the players had apparently been ignoring the "turn your headphones down you don't need to listen to NBA Youngboy this loud you fucking idiot" warning on his iPhone.
So how did Rowan find out that Atlantic Cape was using communication devices? First baseman Felix Diaz told Valli that he heard a voice coming out of a player’s helmet in the first game of a doubleheader on Apr. 22.
“I didn’t believe it,” Valli recalled. “I just thought, ’nah.’ I didn’t believe it. I didn’t not believe him, but for that sophisticated of cheating, I just didn’t think they would do it. I didn’t think they would do it. For me, I wasn’t going to go right up there in the first inning. We had to confirm that’s what it was. So the second time up, those same guys got on, and he was confirming with me the whole time. Once those guys got on, he’s saying I hear it. I hear it.”
Valli asked the umpire to check two helmets of Atlantic Cape players in the bottom of the third inning. After the umpire confirmed the devices, the contest was stopped and Valli requested that the center field camera be removed before resuming play. No players or coaches were ejected.
I love the way all the players are standing there staring at each other as the ump checks helmets. Thats a group of guilty 20 somethings if I have ever seen one. It looks like someone's mom just came home early and they are all looking at each other trying to figure out who is going to take the fall for liquor bottle they stole out of mom's cabinet and the faint scent of the devil's lettuce in the air.
What's even crazier is that no one was thrown out of the game. All the ump did was make them take down the camera and they kept on playing. Maybe he felt bad because even though they were cheating they still weren't very good at it. That video above is from Game 2 of a double header. They had already lost 11-4 in Game 1.
Seems silly to me to piss away a 13 year career just to have a baseball team that hovers around .500, but that's why Rodney is a real man of genius and I'm not. And from what I can tell the team has never even had a winning season while being managed by the Joe Niekro of NJCAA Region 19 baseball.
So today we salute you, Mr. Really Bad at Cheating Manager Guy. When you gave your players the steal sign you weren't just talking about second base.
No one can ever take that 10-21 2018 season away from you where your team was outscored by a combined 127 runs. So crack open an ice cold beer Mr. Two-Way Radio, because your career is over and out.