(Also worth noting: Elijah Dukes admitted to smoking weed before Nats home games? Screengrab via TampaBay Online.)
"Most of the guys carried [their weed] in their little man purses. You know I never did. Most of the guys carried their little man purses. Louis Vuitton, Gucci, you know."
(Elijah Dukes, via TBO.com, 2/12/2011)
This time last year, Elijah Dukes was getting ready to drive from his home outside Tampa to Viera for Spring Training with the Nationals, a starting job in right field seemingly his for the taking. We all know how that ended.
Now, a year later: according to a report by Howard Altman of The Tampa Tribune, Elijah Dukes has reinvented himself as a rapper. Meet Fly Eli:
Fly Eli, who wants to make a name for himself as a rapper, stands in front of the microphone in the little studio off 40th Street and belts out lyrics about women and booze and clubs. ...
"Life is our hook," says Fly Eli, better known as Elijah Dukes to baseball fans and those who knew him when he was a hot shot athlete growing up in Tampa. "What we see is what you get."
(via TBO.com, 2/11/2011)
But the rap career is the least interesting part of the story. Drum roll, please:
He says he was blackballed by baseball after he came forward last year with allegations that fellow ball players were smuggling drugs onto chartered aircraft, using drugs in hotel rooms after flights and how he would sometimes smoke marijuana before home games when he played for the Washington Nationals.
(via TBO.com, 2/11/2011)
So THAT'S why Mike Rizzo released Dukes! Now it all adds up! Smoking pot before Nats home games! Another bizarre, sad chapter in the Elijah Dukes story unfolds...
The videos accompanying the complete Tampa Tribune piece are must-see-TV. So, just who were these Nats players Dukes saw smoking pot and filling their man purses full of cocaine?
"Sometimes I smoked before the home games or whatever, but only in the big leagues," he says. "I was just going along with the motions, started being myself. I was going along with it. Peer pressure. You are looking up to guys and at the same time these guys are saying, 'Hit some of this.'"
"But guys smoke," he says. "That's why they don't test for marijuana.''
Dukes says he saw other ballplayers, whom he will not name, bring drugs, including marijuana and cocaine, onto chartered flights.
(via TBO.com, 2/12/2011)
Fantastic. And to cap it off, a little video of Fly Eli in all his glory, via @kevinreiss: