Tuesday, November 18

I like my ballplayers scrappy and white

Congratulations to Dustin Pedroia, the reigning AL MVP.

This was originally intended to be a post about how the average baseball beat writer has a soft spot in his heart for relatively small, scrappy white players. Then I looked at Pedroia's stats, and [shrug] he had a quality season. Baseball Prospectus shows that Pedroia's as good a choice as any field players up for the award. So, the ire died down, and I doff my hat to Pedroia.

That said, Pedroia is coming dangerously close to competing with supplanting Derek Jeter as my most hated player. The parallels are striking:

  • Both are white.
  • Both play the middle infield (loosely applied to Jeter)
  • Both are above average.
  • Both are "clutch."
  • Both can up right as their teams started winning.
  • Both play for teams with insane fans.
It's the last one that really gets me. Most of the reason I can't stand Jeter is the irrational loyalty thrown his way. A cross between Superman and Honus Wagner couldn't do what Jeter-fanboys claim he can do. It's becoming the same with Pedroia. I find myself hoping Jeter (and now Pedroia) to fail, fail miserably, and fail completely, just so I can tell these fanboys to shove it!

It's hard to remain a baseball fan when your team stinks (cf. 2008 Mariners). When my team eats it, I find that only hate can keep me going. Only hate makes my baseball passion strong. So I guess as much as I despise Jeter (and now, Pedroia), I have to thank them for keeping the passion strong.

1 comments [add yours!]:

spanky said...

I have no cause to disagree with anything you wrote. My interest in baseball waned somewhat these past two years—I am sure the historic suckitude of the M's plays no role in this—but my largely uninformed opinion conforms with yours.

I would also note that while you may or may not like your ballplayers scrappy and white, that's definitely how you like your balls. In your mouth. And whatnot.