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Rooting for Brett Myers

Jan 15, 2010, 11:59 AM EST

Brett Myers may want to “stick it” to the Phillies, and most Phillies fans will probably boo the living hell out of the guy because of it, but don’t count Bill Baer from Crashburn Alley in that crowd:

I don’t have a problem with what Myers said. In fact, I like it and we
should expect no less from a player as competitive as him. And I’ll be
honest: I’ll be rooting for the guy when he’s not pitching against the
Phillies.

Bill is not willing to pass ultimate judgment on Myers based solely on the domestic abuse incident. He defends his work ethic. He thinks Myers was a good teammate, willing to move to the closer role with way less fuss than many other players make when asked to change positions and roles.

I still can’t say I’m a big Myers fan, but then again I’m not a Phillies fan either, so I’m willing to give Bill the benefit of the doubt here.

  1. Moses Green - Jan 15, 2010 at 12:24 PM

    Brett Myers, Julio Lugo, Bobby Cox … domestic abuse is one I just can’t get past, and I’m the guy arguing all Steroid Cheats plus Shoeless Joe and Pete Rose should be in the HOF. It’s just weird that who goes in the HOF is the big “moral” debate, but a lot of those same sanctimonious jackholes who want the Hall to be “pure” still root for the guys named above.

  2. Jonny5 - Jan 15, 2010 at 12:24 PM

    Myers does have anger management issues,But so does my wife…. I think I’ll just leave that one be…….. as already stated he always tried to do what was asked of him without much fuss… he wasn’t all bad in philly, he did have some very memorable moments with Philly, i’ll kinda miss the big dope myself.

  3. Old Gator - Jan 15, 2010 at 12:31 PM

    Gotta be with you on that. “Domestic abuse” is just politicorrectspeak for “wife beating” and, aside from maybe Sarah Palin or Martha Mitchell, no spouse deserves such treatment. Personally, I hope Myers takes a line drive off the top of his head a la Jon Matlack and while unconscious has to watch interminable reruns of Defending Your Life, with himself trapped in the talent envelope of Albert Brooks. If he doesn’t wake up a certified pussycat from that, he probably ought to become a case study for Oliver Sacks.

  4. Moses Green - Jan 15, 2010 at 12:35 PM

    Albert Brooks’ career started off so promisingly that I once described Steve Guttenberg as “a homeless man’s Albert Brooks.” But Defending Your Life is indefensible, and fortunately when I watched it my TV set was indefenestrable.

  5. Moses Green - Jan 15, 2010 at 12:55 PM

    Most Alaskan men are too smart to try and smack a woman who could put 3 slugs inside a .25 cent piece from 50 yards on a windy day. The ones who aren’t smart enough are lying in a ditch next to a pride of wolves who were machine-gunned from a chopper.

  6. John Willumsen - Jan 15, 2010 at 1:50 PM

    Nothing adds to the enjoyment of a Friday afternoon like some Moses Green — Old Gator back and forth.
    But on a more serious note, Baer’s defense reads like an exercise in confirmation bias. Baer feels like he wants to root for Myers and then comes up with reasons why it’s ok to do so. His arguments are weak at best, willfully self-deceiving and ignorant of the realities of domestic abuse at worst. Take for example the fact that he says that because Myer’s wife has forgiven the abuse, we ought to as well. I worked with victims of domestic abuse, and as anyone who is even remotely well-informed about the topic will tell you, the cycle of abuse is horrible and all too often endless. The trend in law enforcement and psychological counseling in these cases is to ignore the feelings of the victim because the cycle of abuse so frequently warps their perspective and renders them unable to truly break free. Or take his argument that he, Baer, has his own skeletons in his closet and therefore cannot “get on a high horse” and condemn Myers. Well I’d respond that if Baer has something in his past that is as bad as, or worse than, domestic abuse, then the fact that he roots for someone should be taken as evidence in support of the notion that said person is, in fact, NOT worthy of being cheered. Domestic abuse is a horrible crime that almost always goes far beyond a single reported incident. Normally I take the stance that people are entitled to their opinions, but Baer’s view is a fairly commonly held one and does nothing but diminish the atrociousness of domestic abuse. It may be a minor act, but by taking a stand against Brett Myers, we are saying that we as a society reject acts of domestic abuse completely and fully. Incidents of drunk driving decreased when it became stigmatized. The percentage of smokers has gone down as smoking has more and more become a thing that society frowns upon. Rooting for Brett Myers not only fails to boost the effort to stigmatize and reject domestic abuse, but it indicates that we value athletic performances more than decency.

  7. Michael - Jan 15, 2010 at 2:18 PM

    The fact is that the domestic abuse issue is a critical part of his “stick it” statement:
    Without the Phillies front office firmly on his side in the days following the event, he ends up like Bobby Chouinard – a marginal pitcher who is now unemployable.
    That fact makes his latest idiocy, well, par for the course with him. Hopefully this will be a lesson for the Phils FO to think twice before quickly begging the media and fans to “put it behind” a player with a serious ongoing issue.

  8. Bill Baer - Jan 15, 2010 at 4:56 PM

    the cycle of abuse is horrible and all too often endless.
    Why do you assume “a cycle of abuse” in Myers’ case? Would you assume “a cycle of abuse” if, say, Peyton Manning was found to have hit his wife in a situation equivalent to Myers’?
    You accuse me of having a confirmation bias, but I think you’re biased against Myers from the start in immediately assuming the worst of him.
    Well I’d respond that if Baer has something in his past that is as bad as, or worse than, domestic abuse
    I don’t. My worst legal offense is speeding.
    Domestic abuse is a horrible crime that almost always goes far beyond a single reported incident.
    44%. Not “almost always” but that is very high. However, again, I don’t know why you immediately assume the worst of Myers, especially without sufficient evidence to back up your claims.
    Similarly, you immediately discredit his wife Kim. She has publicly stated that she forgives Brett and has been traveling with him to his various baseball functions. For someone as visibly dependent on evidence as you are, why do you suspend such reliance in this instance?
    Baer’s view is a fairly commonly held one and does nothing but diminish the atrociousness of domestic abuse.
    This is quite a strawman. I assume you missed where I wrote that “all violence is reprehensible whether against a man or woman”.
    It may be a minor act, but by taking a stand against Brett Myers, we are saying that we as a society reject acts of domestic abuse completely and fully.
    That’s ridiculous. The Brett Myers incident has absolutely no impact on the views on domestic abuse of the United States as a whole. By changing a couple of words around (for specificity), you could make an argument that standing for the Pledge of Allegiance makes the country stronger. It’s pure fantasy.
    At any rate, I think the act of forgiveness goes a long way rather than throwing a hissy fit.
    I’m an atheist and I think most of what’s written in the Bible is just as fanciful as your beliefs on treating the Brett Myers incident. However, if one were to read the Bible and take anything out of it, I think that forgiveness is the #1 thing. People on the whole could do well to be more forgiving, to turn the other cheek. We’re so hyped up on vengeance in this society.
    Incidents of drunk driving decreased when it became stigmatized. The percentage of smokers has gone down as smoking has more and more become a thing that society frowns upon.
    I’d like to see the statistics for this that include the points at which the law came into effect. I’d bet that the decreases that you cite coincide with the enforcement of the alcohol and tobacco laws.
    Overall, you have completely ignored A) that the incident was, in fact, isolted; B) that Myers has made a clear, concerted effort to remedy his anger problems; and C) that his wife has forgiven him.
    I would suggest trying to examine the issue from an impartial standpoint instead of a pitchfork-and-torch point of view.

  9. Moses Green - Jan 15, 2010 at 5:11 PM

    You also said Brett Myers is easy to hate, I agree with that the most. I thought the “joke” he played on Kyle Kendrick was one of the worst things I’ve ever seen, making that poor hayseed thinking he got traded to Japan. Bill Baer took some unfair shots at you, but I also agree with most of what he said about violence against women.
    There are lots of men who have abused a woman or more than one at some point in their lives. Those guys could do a lot worse than to take Brett’s example in attempting to remedy his anger problems through counseling and meaningful behavior change.

  10. louie stone - Jan 15, 2010 at 10:16 PM

    I loved Defending Your Life. Saw it again two weeks ago and the movie is brilliant. I don’t think that would be a punishment at all.

  11. Old Gator - Jan 15, 2010 at 11:40 PM

    With Christian Slater, John Turturro or even Herve Villachaize, maybe it would have been brilliant. With Albert Brooks, it’s so middlebrow that you’d need the scalpel inserted through the top of your head to make a lobotomy work.
    .
    Old Gator replying to Comment from Moses Green: for the most part I agree with you, but Guttenberg gave me “oh boy, if that was foreplay I’m a dead man,” a line which served me really well on a number of occasions. You do of course understand how difficult it would otherwise have been to be witty and charming post coitu triste est, I presume. By the way, whatever happened to the entry about Sarah being the Talkeetna Moose Turd Festival Queen when she was still in High School? Someone deleted it from her bio on the Going Rogue promotional website.

  12. Stan 'the man' - Jan 16, 2010 at 2:38 AM

    Old Gator is nuts. Christian Slater? Now I know you’re joking. Albert Brooks rules. If you like Christian Slater you are perfect for the world you live in.

  13. Old Gator - Jan 16, 2010 at 8:24 AM

    In a list of names that includes a dead midget, you speculate that I am serious about Christian Slater, and in the same breath assert that Albert Brooks rules. In a bowl of menudo, perhaps. Nevertheless, intrigued by the challenges to classical symbolic logic posed (inadvertently, I must assume) by your assertion, I sat down at my Babbage Engine and tried to graph your comment, and while trying to reconcile the terms of the resulting differential equation wound up solving the unified field (the weak and strong nuclear forces can be equated using a Fibonacci series derived from an uncooked segment of fusilli) and stumbling over the first even integer of Pi.
    .
    This is your universe on acid, and indeed, I am superbly adapted to it.

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