Cleveland Indians left fielder Albert Belle reacts on the field at Jacob's Field. Credit: Tony Tomsic-USA TODAY NETWORK

Since author Jeff Pearlman joined TikTok, he’s been using the social media platform to share some wild stories and opinions about the athletes and teams he’s covered over the years.

The legendary sportswriter and author has shared his thoughts on Pete Rose (“the grossest human being on the planet“) and Reggie Jackson (“an a**hole for decades“) while also sharing interesting or wild anecdotes about his career.

Recently, the author of “Showtime,” “Gunslinger,” and “The Bad Guys Won!” shared his thoughts on the athlete that he believes was the “craziest” and “scariest” to have to try to speak with: Former Major League Baseball star Albert Belle.

@jeffpearlmanauthor The most terrifying, menacing athlete I ever covered. #mob #writersoftiktok #journalism #media #cleveland #guardians ♬ original sound – Jeff Pearlman

“The craziest athlete any journalist had to cover, by far, hands down, and scariest, was Albert Belle. Albert Belle was a huge guy who suffered from some serious mental illness. And you would walk up to him, if you needed to talk to him…and you’d go ‘Hey, Albert, do you think I could bother you for a minute?’ and he would turn to you and just go like this,” said Pearlman, showing off an emotionless stare.

“And you’d go, ‘Yeah, I’m working on a piece about right-handed hitters, blah, blah, blah,'” stopping once again to do the blank stare before continuing. “‘Yeah, so, I don’t know if you have a minute?’ And he’d say, “You need to get away from my f***ing locker.’ And you’d be like ‘Okay.’

“And there are a lot of stories of Albert Belle throwing s*** at people. Just menacing the f*** out of people. Terrifying guy to cover. Truly terrifying guy to cover. And I wasn’t scared of any athletes.”

The five-time All-Star and Silver Slugger was indeed a menace on the field, retiring after 12 seasons with a .295 career batting average, 381 home runs, 1,239 RBI, and a .564 slugging percentage. But there are also plenty of stories to back up Pearlman’s account as well. His Wikipedia page is littered with personal problems, suspensions, outbursts against reporters, and legal issues.

After Belle retired in 2001, NYDaily News columnist Bill Madden wrote that “there’ll be no words of sympathy here for Albert Belle. He was a surly jerk before he got hurt and now he’s a hurt surly jerk….He was no credit to the game. Belle’s boorish behavior should be remembered by every member of the Baseball Writers’ Association when it comes time to consider him for the Hall of Fame.”

First eligible in 2006, Belle never came close to being elected to the Hall of Fame.

[Jeff Pearlman]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to