Mag Minute: James Shields, Royals pitcher

February, 23, 2013
2/23/13
7:00
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James ShieldsJohn Sleezer/Kansas City Star/Getty ImagesKansas City's new ace has a wife-approved celebrity crush.
After growing up a baseball star in his hometown of Newhall, Calif., James Shields was drafted by the Tampa Rays in 2000 and made his MLB debut with the club in 2006. In his years in Tampa, Shields posted a 3.89 ERA and 1.22 WHIP and distinguished himself as the first and only Rays pitcher to win a World Series game, in 2008. With a newly finalized trade and contract, James Shields heads to the Kansas City Royals for his eighth MLB season.

What is your most irrational fear?

I’m always scared I’m going to lose my shoe on the mound. A shoe coming off while pitching is pretty irrational, considering how they’re laced up. But I really need my shoe, man.

What was the last thing you Googled?

“Mercedes dealerships.” When you make a little more money, you want to treat yourself to something good, like a new car.

What was the best gift you ever received?

My kids, courtesy of my beautiful wife. Although I chipped in, too. Good job by me.

How about the worst gift?

A whoopee cushion from one of my best friends. I got it when I turned 30. There’s nothing like farting noises to remind you that you’re getting old.

Who is your celebrity crush?

Mila Kunis. We go back all the way to “That ‘70s Show.” But my wife’s cool with it. She thinks Mila’s cute, too.

What is your most hated household chore?

Washing the dishes. I’m the cook in the family, so you’d think I wouldn’t have to wash the dishes, too, right? But my wife makes me wash the dishes.

What is the best thing about the job?

Hanging around with the guys in the clubhouse.

And the worst thing?

Giving up home runs to Jose Bautista. Now, let me be clear, it doesn’t happen very often. But when it does, it hurts.
Sam Alipour is a Senior Writer at ESPN Magazine and contributor to ESPN and ESPN.com. Contact him at sam.alipour@gmail.com and on Twitter.

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