Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Leave Joba alone

I know the media likes to persistently hound teams like the Yankees and Red Sox, but this is getting to the point of absurdity. Joba likes to pump his fist when he does something well. He doesn't point at the hitter and swing his fist around like Dennis Eckersley. He doesn't throw at hitters heads when they rough him up like Vincente Padilla or Pedro Martinez (though Kevin Youkilis probably thinks he does it just for fun) and he doesn't throw bats at people like Roger Clemens. By most reports he is a good guy who is gregarious and as of yet he hasn't committed any crimes or killed any small animals, at least that we know of.

Apparently Goose Goosage feels that Joba's behavior is unacceptable. It really irks me that they have to dig this deep to find something wrong with Joba. Yes, Mo never reacts to anything good or bad. But that is who Mariano is, a very pious and deeply religious individual. It is his style of play and it is what allows him to be so good. Now let's look at two other elite closers. Francisco Rodriguez is constantly screaming and jumping around when he closes out the most insignificant games. Jonathon Papelbon does the same when he finishes an important game.

These pitchers use their emotions to fuel themselves. I'll be the first to admit that it gets me mad when I see one of these two pitchers finish a game against the Yankees and have to watch them celebrate, but I think that anger is directed more toward my team losing than the their celebrations. Plus Papelbon sucks at dancing.

Hitters pose at the plate all the time and little is done to stop their celebrating. Let the kid be who he is. Joba uses his emotions to pitch well and that shouldn't be taken away from him because someone who pitched 40 years ago thinks he should or some old guys on the radio think it isn't classy. These aren't the business like teams of the late '90s and no matter how badly some people want to live in the past, this is a different team with different players who are younger and more energetic. Times change Goose. Kids these days are just different and so is baseball.


Joey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joey said...

It seems people want it both ways, they want athletes to be calm and polite but not so much that it looks like they don't care. Do you want a JD Drew or a Kevin Youklis? I prefer Youklis emotion to Drew indifference.

Dan said...

In any sport I have no opposition to celebrating as long as it's appropriate for the situation. I didn't see Joba's celebration, but it sounds pretty tame to me. If you hit a homerun in a critical situation or as Joba did, get a strike out in an important part of the game then, give a little yell and fist pump. What's the harm? If you hit a homer, and it closes a 10-0 deficit to 10-1, then you pose and admire your handy work, then you're just an idiot.

Mike said...

Papelbon wasn't dancing on Friday. Nathan doesn't get that excited either, he just twitches uncontrollably.

Dennis said...

I have to agree with Mike. There is a no such thing as an important part of a game in May, especially for a team with World Series aspirations. If you yell and dance in October, that is understandable.