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Heath Bell swears off Twitter, Facebook to avoid the idiots

Sep 20, 2012, 11:34 AM EDT

Heath Bell AP

I think it’s fair game to go after a player’s performance. But to go after a player personally is another thing altogether. Sure, if they put their character or behavior in question, fine, but there’s a big difference between “Player X stinks” and “Player X is a jerk.”

Many more steps beyond that on the vile-o-meter is going after a player’s family.  Which is what happened to Heath Bell after he and the Marlins were featured on “The Franchise,” and which has led to him and his family quitting social media altogether.  Because people were saying all kinds of ugly things, such as

“That (Bell’s wife is) ugly, fat, disgusting,” Bell said when asked what were some of the negative comments he had seen on the Internet. “That my kids are not really good. They’re ugly looking. They’re not respectful. That I can’t pitch because I don’t have a beautiful wife. All those good things. Anything you can think of … It was everywhere.”

One of Bell’s kids has Down Syndrome, by the way.

I know that public figures are going to draw the idiots, and maybe public figures should do their best to ignore the noise, but there’s no excuse for that crap.

People are the worst.

(thanks to Jim C for the heads up)

  1. baseballisboring - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:36 AM

    Ugh, that is revolting. The internet reveals true human nature in the ugliest ways.

    • Brian Donohue - Sep 20, 2012 at 1:52 PM

      Evil is not “true human nature”. To believe such a delusion is to perpetuate it. This is not an original opinion of mine; a fairly wise fellow who lived around 2,500 years ago wrote about it first.

      • gwhempel - Sep 20, 2012 at 2:52 PM

        Evil is not the same thing as ignorance and stupidity.

        Nice job tooting your own horn though.

  2. natslady - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:42 AM

    Believe it or not, that’s almost civilized compared to this (for context, Morgan made a dumb play in reaction to another player’s taunts). People, it’s a game.

    • baseballisboring - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:49 AM

      Yeah…a freakin game. I love sports (well…baseball, I actually don’t care about any others), and I care quite a bit about the Red Sox, but jesus. I mean, I’m not one of those fans who treats Red Sox/Yankees like it’s Israel and Palestine. People are useless.

      • natslady - Sep 20, 2012 at 12:13 PM

        I’m with you. I love the Nats, but I’m not trashing Clippard’s family because he gave up a dinger to Kemp and lost one of the most exciting games I’ve been at this year–and I’ve been at a few. I do think the umps were inexcusably unprofessional, but they are human beings also.

  3. darthicarus - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:52 AM

    Oddly the idiots are the reason I go on Facebook/Twitter/etc.

  4. willclarkgameface - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:56 AM


    What would Kenny Powers Do you ask?


    I mean, professionally, he needs to swear off blowing saves. That’s a given. But damnit…leave the dudes family alone. It’s low to bring comments about a guys wife into play, even lower (way lower) to bring in the kids, but if he has a kid with special needs and there are people out there that are bringing that noise…that’s disgusting.

    • kevinbnyc - Sep 20, 2012 at 12:58 PM

      There are way too few Kenny Powers references on this board. Thank you.

  5. skids003 - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    If you think this country is not full of idiots, wat and see how this election plays out.

    • 18thstreet - Sep 20, 2012 at 2:37 PM

      Your just not aloud to say people are stupid and then mispell “wait.”

      • hconnor2001 - Sep 20, 2012 at 6:20 PM

        Please say your own spelling here was ironic.

      • 18thstreet - Sep 21, 2012 at 12:52 PM

        It was ironic, yes.

  6. thebadguyswon - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    This is example 1A why Twitter is awful.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 20, 2012 at 5:02 PM

      Here’s an even worse reason:

      Posting a rumor as a paid journalist. Then an hour later:

      Seriously, Jerod Morris was taken to the woodshed by everyone in the MSM for not even being half as accusatory as that first tweet. Where’s the backlash now?

      And now for a respectable person’s opinion:

      • thebadguyswon - Sep 20, 2012 at 6:17 PM

        What a douche….and you are right – perfect example.

  7. kevinleaptrot - Sep 20, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    It is amazing what people will do when their chickenshit little asses are hidden by the anonymity of the internet.

    • Cris E - Sep 20, 2012 at 1:00 PM

      You tell ’em, kevinleapto… Hey! Wait a minute!

  8. contraryguy - Sep 20, 2012 at 1:19 PM

    It’s a shame about the attacks on family members; no place or time for that. But most people who receive stuff like that on Twitter just block the sender and get on with things.

  9. jolink653 - Sep 20, 2012 at 1:57 PM

    Of course fans say that because they can hide behind a screen name and a computer screen…Guaranteed not one of those people would have anything to say to Bell if they were face-to-face…Disgusting how seriously people take sports sometimes

  10. rcali - Sep 20, 2012 at 3:40 PM

    Boy did he get over on the Marlins. All the signs were there for a year like he’s had.

    • hconnor2001 - Sep 20, 2012 at 6:21 PM

      Sorry. Relevant how?

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