Steve Sparks Dislocated Shoulder Tearing A Phonebook In Half, Steve Sparks saw an inspirational speaker and it definitely inspired him but it led to a strange baseball injury. Steve Sparks dislocated his shoulder when he impersonated the inspirational speaker by trying to rip a phone book in half. Steven William Sparks (born July 2, 1965 in Tulsa, Oklahoma) is a former knuckleball-throwing right-handed Major League Baseball pitcher, who graduated from Holland Hall High School, then attended Sam Houston State University in 1987.
Sparks started his Major League career with the Milwaukee Brewers in 1995. He signed as a free agent with the Anaheim Angels in 1998 and was a free agent again in 2000. He signed briefly with the Philadelphia Phillies, but was released in spring training. Sparks started the 2000 season with the Detroit Tigers and had a career-high 14 wins for them in 2001. After starting the 2003 season with the Tigers, he briefly played for the Oakland Athletics and ended the season with the Toronto Blue Jays, before moving to the Arizona Diamondbacks for the 2004 season. He was signed by the San Diego Padres to a minor-league contract before the 2005 season. After the 2005 season, he was signed by the Houston Astros to a minor league contract, but after being cut, he retired at age 40.
Sparks now lives in Houston and occasionally appears on pre-game and post-game shows for Houston Astros games as an analyst. Sparks actually had a chance to make the major league club in 1994, but dislocated his shoulder by attempting to rip a phone book in half as a motivational technique.