A daily accumulation of history and present as I follow the 2011 year through the baseball season and reflect on the glories and disappointments of the greatest game on Earth.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Roger McDowell

On Seinfeld, he was the 2nd spitter. Sure, Hernandez was upset at Kramer razzing him, but it definitely wasn't a magic loogie!
In baseball, he was a career .500 pitcher, but he did post a 3.30 ERA for his career that ran from 1985-1996. That has to say something. He also had a fair bit of saves, and while they are baseball's most over-rated statistic EVER, he did have a purpose when he played.
As the Atlanta pitching coach, he was tasked with making the team resemble that of the late eighties and nineties. However, instead, he took a couple of hecklers to task in ways that were homophobic and threatening. They were so degrading that do-nothing commissioner Bud Selig did something - suspend McDowell for 2 weeks, give him sensitivity training, and agree to have him personally apologize to one fan and his family.
To this, we have 2 thoughts:
1) don't be an asshole.
2) don't be an asshole back.
I learned a long time ago that you can't win in a confrontational argument. If you're a professional, you have to act like one. Look at former President Bush and the fact that he had to deal with people wearing Kill Bush T-shirts. Sarah Palin and John McCain were brought together for sex pictures during their run for president (as was Obama and Hillary). When you're a public figure, you get this stuff... like it or not. You're manhood isn't in question when drunken yahoos are shouting insults at you. Play through and ignore them. It's part of the game.
Sadly, this isn't the first time that the Atlanta Braves have had to face the consequences on some redneck comments by one of their pitchers. Who can forget John Rocker, who screwed up so badly that even Twisted Sister got upset at him and refused to let him come out to their song anymore.
Now, don't get me wrong. I get the call for him to be fired for insensitivity unparalleled, and as we learned on Glee last night, once the toothpaste is out of the container, it doesn't go back in, but there's something else... the right to earn a living.
Is McDowell competent enough to pitch or be a pitching coach? Is firing him going to permanently keep him from getting hired again (and thus being a ward of the state)? Aren't we supposed to be punishing people so they learn from their mistakes?
Because if we can't allow them to learn from their mistakes, then why not just feed them to the sharks?
To be honest, I'm sure a lot of people would like to see him eaten by Jaws.

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