I posted the below on Facebook in early February, half tongue in cheek, but at the end of the day the Houston Astros just aren’t getting it…the Astros, MLB and MLBPA have to realize that this is NOT going to go away.
From the owner, “we deserved to win the championship” to the players showing no remorse and getting into arguments with fans in spring training, this has been one constant Public Relations disaster…and it is not getting better!
Their new manager, Dusty Baker, who had nothing to do with this, has asked “how long people can talk about this?”
The simple answer is Dusty, until your organization properly addresses it!
One reason why MLB has dragged its feet on handing down its verdict on the Boston Red Sox has to be that it will just re-open these wounds. The public is generally forgiving, but that is when the culprit is repentant. I am still convinced that if Pete Rose had just come out years ago and said, “I did this, I was wrong and I am sorry,” that he would be in the Hall of Fame right now (for many years). Remember, Rose gambled and that was wrong…he never bet on his team to lose, which in his–(twisted?) mind meant he was showing another layer of support and optimism for the team he starred for and managed. Whether or not Rose should be in the Hall of Fame is another issue (he should) but with all of those years of denial–he essentially made his own bed.
The baseball public is pissed…the Yankee and Dodger fans are incensed and they have every right to be. Aaron Judge was robbed of a potential MVP and World Series ring. This seems like one of the nicest guys in the game and he has not pulled punches about this.
What is done is done. Everyone deserves a second chance–forgiveness. That is–if they want it! Sometimes people refuse to be humbled and their universe then becomes chaotic.
Chaos may be the only apt description of this ball club, their actions and their stance in light of the facts.
OK, HOUSTON…you have a problem. Here is what I would do; keep your World Series rings, wave the flag at your stadium but have every player￼ donate his World Series share to charity. Both the Astros and MLB should match it. Every time you go on the road to a new city one player brings a check to that charity (hospital, rescue mission etc.) and the media is invited. Rinse and repeat. The ‘Stros split a record $30,420,155.57 in postseason pool money…positive PR. It won’t take the bad taste out of everyone’s mouth, but at least you won’t look like the buffoons you have been.
This post received a lot of positive affirmation and made me think that this solution is really not that far off-especially with the way they keep bungling this situation. Yes, they fired their GM and Manager, and I guess they felt like that would quell the situation. While those actions were correct, and deserved, it is far from appeasing to the baseball public. MLB and the players union have equally failed to satisfactorily address this scandal.
Players (guilty ones) who are being harassed in Spring Training are actually engaging fans in arguments. The arrogance of some of the Astros has made even the most sympathetic and compassionate soul angry. Hey Houston, if you think it is bad in Spring Training where people are generally hanging out enjoying the Florida sunshine, just wait until the regular season when the real hard core (and generally more obnoxious fans) want to get a piece of you. If you can’t handle someone heckling you in the on deck circle in Port St. Lucie…what do you think will happen in Los Angeles, Chicago and of course when you get vilified in New York….?
Look, I do not condone heckling or harassing players….booing on occasion, OK–you paid for the ticket and I have been moved to that emotion (look at the teams I root for)! But one Astros player repeated several times to a fan, “just keep paying to see us play!”
I couldn’t think of a worse or more out of touch response from someone probably making more money in one year than most people make in a lifetime TO PLAY A KIDS GAME! Just terrible! It will be comments like that which WILL drive fans away–there are many entertainment options.
To the Astro players on that team…why does this solution make sense?
*It shows remorse
*It makes a positive from a negative
*It is hard to boo someone who is being benevolent and helping your community
*In the larger scheme of things if you were on that team and received a World Series share it probably pales in comparison to your salary and you will get a tax write off–but don’t donate it to your Foundation! Follow the directive on the Facebook post!
It is time to both own up to this and to try to make it right. MLB will not strip your title, the association will defend you short of a criminal act (maybe even then) and you have to show that somehow–you have a concscience.
Houston, I will be glad to help you coordinate this effort….just do the right thing…please?
So we can ALL “just move on.”
Just keep following the path you are on–why don’t you give Pete Rose a call and see how that turns out?