Thursday, October 1, 2015

SWING MAN: Sad to see Jeremy Affeldt retire, but he's had an absolutely stunning career as a middle relief guy and has one of the best post-season ERAs of any pitcher ever.  He did have a few parting words for baseball during his retirement presser of the five things he would not miss about baseball. Most notably, for this crowd:

The City of "Brotherly Love"

"Hang on, I know what you're thinking: Jeremy, do you have any idea how dangerous it is to insult the entire city of Philadelphia?! And yes, I know. I know all too well.

So first, let me be clear. Philly is a great sports town, with passionate fans and a palpable energy. The problem, though, is that the city, more than any other I've played in, seems to condone and almost revel in its fans crossing the line. Nowhere else in this country—again, based on my experience as a 14-year major leaguer and the conversations I've had with other players—is the opposition treated in such a repeatedly vile and borderline threatening manner.

We are out here to play a game, and even though we are paid handsomely to do so, professional athletes should not be subject to vulgarity, personal attacks or epithets. Sadly, in Philadelphia, this kind of fan conduct is far too typical. The irony is, while Phillies fans succeed in making many players dread traveling there, they also (not surprisingly) impact the decision-making process of those same players in free agency.

Sure, it's great to play for a rabid fan base, but after experiencing firsthand how powerful that fervor can be when it is channeling extreme negativity, it really makes you think twice about where all that collective anger comes from, and whether you want to subject yourself and your family to that all the time."


He also has unkind things to say about Wrigley Field. Well, mostly the player's locker rooms which sound about as adequate as a 40 year old high school.

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