To me, this is embarrassing stuff. I am glad I get to be the guy just eating popcorn and following from a distance.
The New York Mets just issued an OFFICIAL STATEMENT to crap on new Mets player, and former beloved Cub, Javy Báez. By way of necessary background, earlier today, Báez explained why he and some of his teammates were celebrating big offensive moments with a thumbs down:
Javier Báez says the thumbs down celebration is in response to the fans booing the team
“I play for the fans and I love the fans but if they’re gonna do that, they’re putting more pressure on the team” pic.twitter.com/cjUER4M2Pt
— SNY (@SNYtv) August 29, 2021
Francisco Lindor, Javier Báez and Kevin Pillar were among those Mets players to flash thumbs-down signs after their hits today.
“When we don’t get success, we’re going to get booed,” Báez explained afterward. “So they [the fans] are going to get booed when we get success.” pic.twitter.com/TGX55fQM2O
— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) August 29, 2021
— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) August 29, 2021
That’s not something you see or hear too often from players, but whatever. Do what they feel, just like the fans are doing what they feel (and you cannot tell me the fans haven’t been over-the-top at times). I probably wouldn’t have advised the comments, but I do appreciate the stones it took to admit it.
So then the Mets decided to issue an official team statement from team president Sandy Alderson, and it is the most needlessly obsequious thing I’ve seen a team do in a long time:
In a post-game press conference today, Javy Baez stated that his “thumbs down” gesture during the game was a message to fans who recently have booed him and other players for poor performance. These comments, and any gestures by him or other players with a similar intent, are totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
Mets fans are understandably frustrated over the team’s recent performance. The players and the organization are equally frustrated, but fans at Citi Field have every right to express their own disappointment. Booing is every fan’s right.
The Mets will not tolerate any player gesture that is unprofessional in its meaning or is directed in a negative way toward our fans. I will be meeting with our players and staff to convey this message directly.
Mets fans are loyal, passionate, knowledgeable and more than willing to express themselves. We love them for every one of these qualities.
Statement from Mets President Sandy Alderson.https://t.co/dqBf2Ig2TX
— New York Mets (@Mets) August 30, 2021
I get that the fans are the meal ticket, but the fans don’t fan without the players. Praising the fans for booing the team ain’t exactly the best way to get on the players’ good side when you need them most. Then again, the new owner had no problem calling the players out on Twitter, so maybe this is just in line with some new team-building strategy.
All the Mets had to do was nothing. It’s New York. There would’ve been a news cycle, Báez probably would’ve been admonished privately, and things would’ve blown over. And he wouldn’t have been made to feel like shit in the process. This was just so unnecessary.