Back a long time ago when I used to be a fan of the Green Bay Packers — long before I realized the majority of their championships (11 of them) came in their first 50 years and they haven’t done shit these last 50 — back when they were going through their 25 year drought before they hired Ron Wolf and stopped being a laughing stock, I was asked the question, “Would you rather have a team filled with players who were classy, believed in good sportsmanship but had average skills, or would you want a team filled with assholes who won consistently and took you to the playoffs?”
My response was, I’d prefer the team filled with players I can look up to, who I can be proud of as human beings, and who don’t embarrass me or the team.
I still believe that. Luckily, skill and good sportsmanship aren’t an either/or proposition. There are quality athletes who are also quality human beings.
None of them are playing for the Los Angeles Dodgers, it would seem.
Until the playoffs, I had never given the Dodgers much thought. The Milwaukee Brewers had played them a few series during the regular season, but none of their players triggered my Asshole Meter.
Not like players on some of the other teams we play, like Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals (who pegs the needle on the Asshole Meter), Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds, and Jose Bautista of the Philladephia Phillies, for example.
But now, closely watching the NLCS, I can see upclose how many assholes they really have, not only on the Dodgers team itself, but in the stands, as well.
Manny Machado — Milwaukee was in talks with this guy before the Dodgers acquired him. I did not want him as a Brewer and his play with L.A. is proving that point. He has deliberately tried to take out two of our players while he was running the bases. Twice he tried to injure our shortstop sliding into second, and he kicked the leg of our first baseman as he ran past.
Breaking News: MLB has fined Manny Machado for running into Jesús Aguilar.
Rich Hill — He literally had a temper tantrum in the dugout that would have made any two-year-old proud, kicking and throwing containers of candy because he failed to strike out a batter.
Yasiel Puig — Another hot head who breaks bats over his knee when he strikes out. Someone needs to get him a pacifier STAT.
Clayton Kershaw — OK, I take it back that I didn’t notice any assholes on the Dodgers. Kershaw triggers my Asshole Meter with every pitch. Why? Because he balks every single time. Also, his hair is greasy and his hat is stained with grease. You can’t tell me he isn’t doctoring the ball. But because he’s the great Kershaw, he gets away with it. It was nice to see him crying on the bench after we knocked him out early in game one. I hope we can do the same today.
The Fans — Yes, the fans. When our pitcher injured his ankle and walked off the field their fans did nothing. Nothing. I guess being from the midwest, I found that to be terribly rude. If an opposing player gets injured at Miller Park, we stand, clap and cheer when he is taken off the field to show our support. He may be an opposing player, but we still show that we care and hope he gets better. And seriously. L.A. is still booing Ryan Braun? It’s been ten years. Get over it.
I don’t understand fans who can cheer for assholes, and understand even less those who actually admire these types of players. I can’t condone dirty play, immature outbursts, or downright cheating.
“But you guys have Ryan Braun.” See above. Get over it. It was a decade ago. He’s guilty of making a poor decision, then compounded the situation by lying about it, but that doesn’t make him an asshole. Stupid, sure. But he’s been clean since. He served his punishment. And taking PEDs is a far cry from being a spoiled, entitled, little jerkoff asshole, like Bryce Harper. Braun is a good clubhouse leader, a good representative for baseball and the Brewers within the community, and has even been in the running for the Alberto Clemente Award.
Anyway, the thing is when the Brewers finally do get past the Dodgers, they’ll more than likely face a team filled with even more assholes when they play the Boston Redsox.
The sad thing is the national media, as well as Major League Baseball itself, would prefer a World Series where the L.A. Assholes face off against the Boston Assholes.