Survivor 2014 San Juan del Sur Blood vs. Water Season 29 spoilers ask if John Rocker is too much like Jeff Kent from Survivor Philippines? Over Survivor’s 29 seasons, there has been a locker room full of athletes on the harsh reality show from Brad Culpepper to Coach Jimmy Johnson to Cliff Robinson. There have been NFL and NBA players, pro soccer and hockey. But two of the most polarizing players may be from the MLB – current season’s John Rocker and Survivor Philippines’ Jeff Kent. I have to wonder if Rocker studied Kent’s blunders so he doesn’t step in it the same way. So far, though, they seem to be on parallel tracks and this could send John Rocker out early as it did Kent.
Faking who they are…
Both Rocker and Kent wanted to go into the game without revealing that they were former MLB players. Already on day one, Rocker was recognized but put off that he was someone else – John Wetteland – even though Wes specifically asks if he played for the Braves back when they were good. He lied outright but then admitted it’s him. He asks Wes to keep it under his hat but immediately plots to oust him to protect his not-so-secret secret.
Similarly Jeff tried to hide his sporting origins but castmate Sarah Dawson busted him out. Then again, Rocker may have more to fear from being found out than Kent based on his controversial reputation.
A rocky record in the MLB…
Back in the day, Kent was known for rants and arguments with players from other teams, his own teammates, umpires and members of the press. Rocker was more known to rant at opposing team fans (much of the time their behavior warranted his reaction) but also gave that interview talking about foreigners on the New York trains. Kent, however, behaved himself much better on the show. Rocker, though, may not. In early previews, we saw him yelling at one of the Amazing Race twins – Natalie – telling her she looks like a man and then going after her personally saying he thought you lost weight on Survivor. Kent played nice for the sake of the game, but if John can’t control is tongue and keeps dissing the ladies, he may have trouble on his hands.
Did they cast for the controversy?
In his annual cast preview, Jeff Probst says John knew he was coming in with a lot of baggage but thought that was a big challenge and part of the game. Jeff also says he thinks Rocker’s GF Julie could end up being a force to be reckoned with. But so far, John’s attempt to fly under the radar are failing. On this week’s episode, John was sent to Exile Island with Jeremy who immediately recognizes him and says in his confessional that he’s a racist. However, he’s willing to look past it and cuts a deal to each protect the others lady. But since Val ended up voted off, I can’t imagine Jeremy is going to hold back.
Jeremy tells everyone who John is and that he’s a racist and bigot. It makes sense that Jeremy’s tribe would be gunning for John (and maybe Julie based on her relationship with him) but John’s tribe should be smart enough to see that they need him for physical challenges. If John played nice, people might have overlooked his past, but next week, expect to see him threatening to knock a girl’s teeth out and other lovely dialogue.
I had high hopes for Rocker since I was a fan of his as a pitcher, but if he keeps up with the verbal diarrhea, even his mighty muscles won’t be able to save him. Producers may try to keep him around, though, since the rest of the cast seems to be pretty dull so far. John is our only hope for drama this season but the good news is that he found an immunity idol and may be able to keep himself alive for now. Jeff Kent went out in tenth place. We’ll see if John can best the other MLB’er.