Do you think Chris Perez knows that he had a bad day yesterday? It is a dumb question for most of us, but not all of us. Every year some “fans” just refuse to get it. I really hate to do the “real fans” thing where we pretend like if you don’t bong twelve beers in the Muni lot pre-game you aren’t as good a fan as the guy who watches on his couch in Youngstown. That’s now what I’m talking about. I think it is safe to say that if you berate a player on twitter after a bad game that you are worthy of being called out. I know I wrote about this last year, but as social media gets bigger and bigger, I’ll continue to write it annually.
“Thanks %$&*head @ChrisPerez54″
“Answer me %$#* @ChrisPerez54″
I am paraphrasing the two worst quotes I saw yesterday aimed at Cleveland Indians closer Chris Perez (by the same guy, by the way) after Perez started off the season in awful fashion. I checked in on our “friend” this morning and the same guy is was begging Boobie Gibson for an RT for no apparent reason. He claims to be a member of #Teamcleveland, but I might argue that point.
Perez clearly didn’t have it. He blew the save and spoiled Justin Masterson’s great performance. See that? That’s some harsh criticism of Chris Perez. I would never try to tell anyone not to criticize him. I refuse to boo a guy off the field, but I wouldn’t tell anyone else that they shouldn’t. I am guessing Chris Perez wouldn’t tell you not to boo either.
These are big boys and they should be able to handle criticism. Also, they put themselves out there on the Internet and they have to take some of the bad with the good. At the same time, I don’t think I know anyone who would ever say those two quotes above to Chris Perez’ face. Whenever it appears someone has internet muscles you know it is over the line.
Most importantly, I would ask anyone who tweeted at Chris Perez yesterday what purpose they’re looking to serve by putting bile on his timeline. It isn’t our responsibility to coddle Perez and try to coax him into being the best player he can be. That’s something he must accomplish largely by himself between his own ears. But as a fan of the Cleveland Indians, why wouldn’t you want to do everything you can to foster a scenario where the guy can be the best version of himself instead of a guy who was not only battered between the lines but then presumably on his cell phone at home?
That’s where I think we get into the justified argument about whether someone is a “good fan” or not.
I know I’m not going to be able to stop idiocy, but hopefully the counter-movement to these dummies grows as big as the population of trolls. The good people will probably never yell as much as the bad ones, but hopefully their voices ring through louder. If not, we’ll end up with more athletes going the route of Matt LaPorta and quitting altogether.
I’m not sure that’s really where we want this world to go either, but it seems like the eventual path the way we’re headed.