By John Ekdahl
We’ve all heard it before, and while it’s generally true that your allegiance to a team supersedes that of any one player, it doesn’t make it any easier when you lose a hometown favorite. It seems we’ve had to adopt this philosophy more and more during the era of free agency as players tend to jump around. I grew up a huge Don Mattingly fan and I don’t know how loyal I would have been to the Yankees had they traded him away during the 1987 deadline. “Rooting for Laundry” seems a bit too cynical for a young kid.
Keeping that in mind, it was refreshing to see one article lamenting the loss of Umbaldo Jimenez – Losing Ubaldo Jimenez: When You Aren’t Just Rooting For Laundry
Rockies Contributor for SB Nation Dan Lucero:
But there’s another side, that side that made me turn the game off on Saturday night after watching Ubaldo Jimenez hug his teammates goodbye in the Rockies dugout.
Forget what we know and don’t know about Ubaldo’s future, his missing velocity, the promise of White and Pomeranz, any of that. Because, frankly, we don’t know anything about any of that. I only know one thing: I loved having Ubaldo Jimenez on my baseball team, loved rooting for him, loved seeing that thousand-watt smile every time he brought home a victory and the equally electric stuff that brought so many of those wins to the team.
Yeah, I know there’s a lot of truth to that Seinfeld bit, that we’re just rooting for clothes. But we get attached to certain guys wearing those clothes, and then one day, they’re not, and as long as we’re sports fans, it never gets any easier.
I’ve never had to explain salary or contract structures to a kid with tears in his eyes, but I can’t imagine it’s a fun experience. This was a bit stranger than usual because Jimenez actually pitched the first inning of yesterday’s game in San Diego when his teammates (and most fans) knew he had already been traded.
The Hanshin Tigers wore memorial ribbons to honor Hideki Irabu, after his death earlier this week. The New York Times had an interesting article on the rise and fall of Irabu’s career (and life) – Hideki Irabu: Baseball Rock Star Who Played Yankee Stadium
The All Blacks broke out their new jersey, with all the typical “lighter-this” and “faster-that” stuff we’re used to hearing at this point. The most obvious change is the white strip on the collar.
All Blacks captain Richie McCaw:
People all over the world recognise the jersey, and of course Kiwis feel extremely strongly about it, so to make a change to it is a big deal. This new jersey is revolutionary – but it’s still very much an All Blacks jersey. It’s still something I’m very proud to wear.
Full article available here.
by Rick Pearson
Always good to go to bat for the underprivileged…
And, in case that wasn’t large enough, here’s the full-size version.