Like Barry Bonds, Baseball Widow hasn't retired; she's just not playing.
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Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Anger Management

I don't understand the dialogue surrounding yesterday's ejection and today's suspension of Milton Bradley for his tantrum on the field. Especially in relation to the suspension of Jose Guillen. Both men are sitting out the rest of the season for their respective (if not respectable) outbursts.

But the judgment of how these two incidents relate is baffling to me. Joe Morgan, who I regard highly for his athletic ability and not for his intellect, has just said (on the ESPN coverage of SF v. SD) that what Bradley did is terribly worse than Guillen's gaffe. In fact, he doesn't believe it is fair to punish the other Angel's players by suspending Guillen.

To me it is just the other way around. Guillen publicly called out his manager for an in-game decision, jeopadizing Scioscia's credibility with the team. Bradley on the other hand reacted (albeit poorly) to being assaulted by a fan with a bottle. The difference, it seems to me, is the players' relationship to the antagonist and the setting. Let's compare these situations to a typical workplace (think Office Space). In Guillen's case, you have a guy attacking his boss for telling him to do something he doesn't want to do. Bradley's outburst is the equivalent of someone (not a co-worker or your boss) coming to your place of work and throwing something at you. If it were you at your job, which do you think would be treated more severely?

Am I wrong? Am I the only one that thinks there's a difference between blowing up at being attacked and throwing a chair at a fan?

Bradley's actions aren't commendable, but shouldn't most of the blame be shouldered by the jerk that threw the bottle? We don't patronize baseball teams so that we can say anything to or throw anything at the players on the field. Even though they have what seems to us to be the best job in the world, this is no excuse to be able to treat them like animals at the zoo. In fact, we often treat them worse than that -- would you throw a bottle at a lion and say something nasty about it's mother? No, and I'd think twice about doing it to Milton Bradley if I were you.

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