Jim Harbaugh Toys with the Media, Talks Best Baseball Player of All Time
Is there any doubt remaining that Jim Harbaugh was the right man for the job in San Francisco? This is only Harbaugh’s first season leading the Niners, and he has already taken them from NFC laughing stock to NFC Championship game. He knows how to handle his players. He knows what plays to call in certain situations. He knows how to confuse his opponents by putting on a show. What is perhaps equally important is that Harbaugh knows how to handle the media. Take, for example, his decision to talk about baseball during a press conference on Thursday.
When a reporter asked Harbaugh if he could draw any comparisons between his own playing days — when he was the quarterback of the Colts and known as “Captain Comeback” — and Alex Smith, it was obvious Jim didn’t want to go there.
“I hate to compare. You can’t compare. It’s so hard to compare,” Harbaugh said according to SFGate.com. “You’re talking 15 or 16 years ago, my goodness. It’s like baseball. Who’s the greatest baseball player of all time? It’s such a tough argument. I like to say Willie Mays, but you have other people that’ll say Babe Ruth, because of what he did in his era. That he had more home runs than any other baseball player, than some other teams hit at that time. He was hitting 65 and other teams were hitting nine. It’s really tough to make comparisons. I think Willie Mays, too. They’ve got a heck of an argument in Babe Ruth. Maybe that’s a discussion for another time.”
The real genius in his comments is that nobody understands the motive. It’s possible Harbaugh was just showcasing how ridiculous it is to compare his current quarterback to himself just days before the biggest game of the year. It’s also possible he was just trying to keep things light and loose. Or maybe — just maybe — he was taking a subtle shot at Joe Biden for confusing football with baseball earlier in the week. The fact that we have no idea is what makes Harbaugh so good at his job.