Thursday, November 7, 2013

Homer (Not the Simpson)

As MLB tries to drag out the award season as long as humanly possible, the Pirates took home two Silver Slugger awards last night.  And as the internet is wont to do, the Pirate internet community has erupted into all out civil war over Pedro Alvarez's selection.

The issue?  Despite being really good at hitting baseballs a long way, and having fair luck making the good hitters in front of him move up to home plate, Pedro doesn't come close to grading out as the best hitting third baseman by any advanced metrics, and his piss poor batting average and on base percentage are far from best in the league.

It seems like the online debate falls on two sides - it's nice that a Pirate is getting recognized, but ideally these awards should go to the best, most deserving player.  And Pedro isn't.  The other side, sort of reminding my of ravenous zombies attacking without remorse, are the homers arguing that anyone who isn't happy for their team succeeding, regardless of circumstance, is a traitorous swine worthy of public shaming.

Alright, that may be a little loaded there.  But I think the debate is a sign of a larger fan zombie rearing its ugly head.

You see, most of the fans making the former argument are message board names and bloggers I've read for years.  They, like me, have been true fans of the team through the lean years.  And as I've written before, being a Pirate fan through The Streak gives you a little more perspective.  Seeing defensive wizards like Pokey Reese and Jack Wilson robbed of Gold Glove status because they played for a team nobody cared about gives you a little different perspective on what is fair in award voting (and admittedly nobody ever claimed that these post season awards are the most rational thing).

But the second group?  Their user name might as well be "BucwatchersinceJuly."  This seems to be the first real time the growing legion of Bucco homers who have magically spurted from the ground have something to rear their ugly, uninformed head over.
Don't get me wrong: I'm happy that a Pirate (multiple Pirates!) are getting recognition for the things this tam accomplished and individual accomplishments.  But I'm also a fan of baseball and baseball history.  And part of that fandom believes in records that reflect an honest reality.  But hey, at least there will probably be a cool bobblehead next year!

1 comment:

  1. Enjoy the awards as they come. I was happy when Jimmy Rollins won the MVP. I know he didn't necessarily deserve it but it was still fun to see your guys get recognized and give you more reason to cheer on the team!