Raekwon is a baseball purist. Growing up in the 70s, playing ball on the sandlots of Staten Island, the legendary lyricist from the Wu-Tang Clan loves the game and hates that so many of its recent stars, like Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens, are tainted by accusations they used steroids.
He wants an even playing field and the game kept clean of drugs that elevate some players to superhuman status. So if it were up to him, the Hall of Fame would be off limits for another four decades to the likes of Bonds and Clemens.
"Put it like this, when they get to 90, let 'em in," says Raekwon.
Before he released his new album last week—The Wild, now available from your favorite music service—The Chef dropped by the Complex offices to talk baseball before the season officially begins Sunday. While just about every rapper out there is a basketball aficionado who drops jewels about the NBA and the game they grew up playing, Raekwon was a little different. His sport was baseball, teaming with a bunch of Bad News Bears types in the 70s. He was an infielder and pitcher—he says he had one hell of an arm back in the day—and at age 47 his love for the game, and his favorite squad (the Yankees), is evident. He just wishes they'd let him throw out the first pitch at a game. He all but guarantees he'll one-up 50 Cent.
“I want to do it just to see if I don’t fuck up,” Raekwon jokes. “You get caught off sometimes. But I definitely want to throw a [first] pitch.”
Your move, Yankees.
Check out the video to hear the hilarious stories from Raekwon's youth and why he hopes Bonds and Clemens don't sniff Cooperstown until they're 90.