The annual passing of the baton from Spring to Summer has once again come and gone. What’s that, you ask? The barbecue-filled Memorial Day weekend culminating in solemn remembrance of our nation’s heroes who paid the ultimate price to ensure our freedom? No, simpleton, it’s of course the single most over-analyzed “anomaly” of our gentlemanly national pastime – baseball: The Bench Clearing Brawl.
Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals & Hunter Strickland of the San Francisco Giants squared off yesterday after Harper took issue with a 95MPH heater to the hip. This was somewhat expected after Harper took Strickland deep 2x in the 2014 NLDS – showing up the pitcher with his reaction around the bases and celebrating with his teammates.
We will spare you the arguments about who was wrong and who was right; who won the fight and who lost; was it justified; does the punishment fit the crime. We won’t engage in that drivel. (But WTF was Buster Posey doing??? The only guy wearing armor may as well have ordered a beer and grabbed his BarcaLounger as he had the best seat in the house. Dude acted like a deer on a highway, avoiding traffic from all directions.)
No, today’s target of primaDerision is the god-awful media who cover this annual right of nothingness. You know the blowhards on sports talk radio arguing how the “unwritten rules of baseball are past their prime” … “the sport better wake up as they’re about lose generations of fan interest” … “these pitchers have a way to prevent being shown up – DON’T GIVE UP HOMERUNS!” Their bullshit commentary is utterly predictable, tired, and indicative of a sports media that somehow survives on cliche and copycat analysis.
You won’t find that with primatomma, baby! Here, we get real. And here’s what you need to know: Baseball fights are a GOOD THING! Yep, you read that right, brother – a good thing. Before you comment about safety, concussions, etc., save your keystrokes. None of us want a player to get seriously hurt, but answer me this: How many MLB Google searches for baseball news occurred this season before yesterday? Our research dept. is on break so someone look into that for me; my guess is that the Harper/Strickland fight beats all of this season’s searches, combined!
The hackneyed sports media would have you think that today’s fickle sports fan – especially our youth – are leaving baseball in droves due to the sports’ antiquated traditions and norms. Umm, really? The generation that has fueled the growth of MMA and Call of Duty are losing interest in baseball because of … fighting???
What are these morons smoking? What baseball needs is more “stuff” to happen, not less. If that means that a couple of times per year a hitter gets smoked with chin music and then charges the mound or engages in a jaw session on his way to first base, then that’s a step in the right direction. Does anyone NOT love the Nolan Ryan filet of Robin Ventura? (Google it, GenX’ers).
You know what baseball fights are? AWESOME! Do you know what they’re not? Boring. And baseball can use a lot more AWESOME and a lot less boring.