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Extremely META: I Mostly Want Me to Stick to Sports, Too, But I’m Human

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The problem for people like me on days like yesterday and today: even if I bought the idea that sports writers (or athletes) should exclusively “stick to sports”, it’s virtually impossible to do it when the President starts dumping all over sports, and the reactions to that and discussion about it weaves its way through the rest of the sports world (including on the Cubs).


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If I totally ignore it, I look like a fool who isn’t paying attention. If I pass along what happened, without perspective or commentary, I’m not doing what I do for literally every other topic of relevance here (and half of you rip me for not saying more). If I share my thoughts and feelings, I’m starting to stray from what this place is suppose to be about (and the other half of you rip me for not sticking to sports).

My official position has always been: when the broader world leans into baseball/Cubs, I share the news, and I comment upon it. I feel like that’s a fair approach to the reader, and to my own conscience. For as much as you might want me to stick to sports, I don’t think you actually want me to just be a sports-writing-beep-boop robot.

So, when A’s catcher Bruce Maxwell became the first baseball player to kneel for the National Anthem last night, I feel it is part of my job as a human baseball writer to share and comment upon that fact:


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I could have left it there. I’ll be pondering today whether I should have. But the human in me took over, and I didn’t feel right not saying more last night:


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Those tweets comprise about 0.00001% of my (fresh and flavorful) content on Twitter, but man alive do people not want to see it coming from me. The unfollows came in a healthy wave thereafter, but that’s a cost I’m willing to incur from time to time (and, hey, man, you’re just losing that fresh and flavorful Cubs content).


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I do appreciate and understand the perspective of those who don’t want me to go there, whether they agree with me or not, because they come here (or follow on Twitter) for the joyful distraction of baseball. I get it, and I agree with you! So that’s why 99.99999% of the time, that’s what I’m all about on the interwebs. But when the other conversations of the world encroach on baseball, and the feelings inside me well up like a balloon filling with water, I’m just being honest with you: I won’t always be able to say nothing. I’m a human, just like you.

I don’t do it to preach, or to tell this side they’re right and this side they’re wrong (in fact, almost all of my messaging is pretty anti-taking-“sides” in the first place). I do it simply because I’m human, and sometimes, that welling up of feelings and thoughts is so strong that I cannot let my fingers keep pecking the keys without saying something. I don’t think I know better than any of you. I just think I’m like you, and I don’t think you would appreciate being told that there are some topics you categorically cannot speak about.

I am not going to go further into the substantive topic right now, because my tweets were really all I intended to say. But I felt like you deserved an explanation of the thinking (or lack of thinking) that goes into those moments.

Back to baseball.


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Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation.