12. John Rocker
In 1999, John Rocker was one of the best closers in baseball. The Braves left-hander saved 38 games with an ERA of 2.49. The young lefty looked like he’d be the closer in Atlanta for years to come. And then he opened his mouth and revealed how mind-blowingly stupid he was, and the fallout was quick and severe. He mocked foreigners, New Yorkers, homosexuals and people with AIDS. He called teammate Randall Simon "a fat monkey." The brushback was severe, as he became the most hated man in baseball. He was taunted mercilessly when he traveled to road games, and had to get heavy security every time he pitched in New York. He continued to pitch well for the Braves, but the unwanted attention he brought to the team got to be too much to handle PR-wise, and he was traded to the Indians in 2001. His career in the American League was a disaster, as he had an ERA over 5 in both Cleveland and Texas. This loudmouth's career ended quietly in 2003 in Tampa, where he had a 9.00 ERA in two games. —Johnny Goodtimes
(AP Photo/John Bazemore)
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