Game On…with Rob Kriete! – MAY 26

Have you ever done something stupid? Perhaps sending an errant text, dated the wrong person, or tripped over your own feet in public? Heck, I even paid a monkey at the Florida Fair for a handshake! We have all done things that seemingly lack intelligence from time to time and have done so publicly.

Modern athletes are cursed with living in a world dominated by social media; sometimes bringing the folly of their thoughts into the spotlight. Yet, this week, Cleveland Indians pitcher Zach Plesac did something rather difficult. He broke a finger on his pitching hand while yanking off his undershirt after a rough outing.

Atlanta Braves pitcher, Huascar Ynoa, broke his pitching hand last month while punching a wall after allowing five earned runs in 4 innings!

I recall Sammy Sosa of Chicago Cubs fame hitting the disabled list after having a violent sneeze. However, this one is not self-inflicted, at least.

When professional athletes, whom long-suffering fans rely on to help their team, make poor choices that cause injury, it is hard to feel empathy for said players. Injuries and slumps are all a part of navigating a season for any professional club. When players bring it on themselves, fans like me understandably lose patience. The Indians fans and Braves fans that lost 20% of their starting rotation to self-inflicted injuries must be beside themselves. How do you return to rooting for these guys?

Of course, these players are young, and we all have made more mistakes earlier on than we do as we get older. (Or, I think that is the way it is supposed to work?). But it still frustrates me that these guys can get out of control and ultimately hurt themselves, their team, and their fans.

Now, maybe I’m still bitter from 1988 when Bobby Ojeda of the NY Mets almost cut off his finger in an “electric hedge clipper gardening accident” instead of pitching for the Metropolitans in the playoffs that year. So, the star pitcher for the Mets is somehow doing lawn work in his spare time? Conspiracy theorists, please get on this one!

Ultimately, it is difficult keeping players and teams healthy. Look at what Covid-19 did to our professional sports last year. But when professionals cannot control their tempers, it leaves this fan pretty upset.

How would you feel about a player on your team acting in such a way?

Be safe, everyone!