Best of Phoenix

Ball Boy: Eric Byrnes

Eric Byrnes, 31, ain't gonna have to worry about being poor anytime soon. The lively and spirited left fielder for the Arizona Diamondbacks just signed a three-year, $30 million contract extension with the team, meaning D-Backs fans can look forward to his antics both on and off the baseball diamond for a few more seasons, at least. Byrnsie is quite a jokester, known for his high-energy and physical, balls-out play (where he frequently dirties his uniform when stealing bases or sliding into home) or for being an entertaining interview on such jock programs as the Best Damn Sports Show Period. The D-Backs' poster boy and most popular player since Gonzo blew town last year, Byrnes is something of a free spirit, whose curly blond locks, San Francisco upbringing, and passion for surfing indicate he's closer to Jeff Spicoli than Jeff Bagwell.

I arrived in Phoenix in 1998, playing baseball in the minor leagues for the Oakland A's.

When I’m stuck in traffic, I listen to music, talk on the phone, or play the out-of-state license plate game.

On Saturday night, you can find me swinging from chandeliers, enjoying my time with my friends.

My favorite thing about summer in Phoenix is that the women wear less clothes.

If I was mayor of Phoenix, I’d keep the bars open until 4 a.m.

In high school, I was the kid who enjoyed the weekends more than the weekdays.

In another life, I was an English bulldog.

On my nightstand, you’ll find a remote control.

The fictional character I’m most like is Elroy from The Jetsons.

One thing I want to do before I die is surf Mavericks. It's a surf spot in Half Moon Bay, the small town where I live in California. It's known as one of the best big-wave surf spots in the world. It's also known as having a huge great white shark population.

The best thing about Phoenix is the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.