Skip to content

If you’re in the opinion business, be prepared to defend your opinions

Nov 16, 2012, 9:46 AM EDT

megaphone

I will preface this by saying that I am certain — 100% certain — that a lot of people out there in Internet land said rude, personal and otherwise awful things to baseball writers who argued in favor of Miguel Cabrera for the MVP.  There were also people who likely said rude, personal and otherwise awful things to people who supported Mike Trout. Indeed, people say rude, personal and otherwise awful things to anyone who says anything about anything, because that’s how the Internet works, unfortunately.

But setting aside those rude, personal and otherwise awful sentiments from rude and awful people, I am not going to have much sympathy for baseball writers who are upset that people take issue with their opinions and analysis.

I am not going to link to any specific examples of upset baseball writers because the point is not to go after any specific person today.  But I have seen some pretty unfortunate reactions from professional writers in the past 24 hours. Writers who are shocked, angered or more than mildly annoyed that folks dare criticize them for their opinions about the MVP (and other things). The sentiments range from ruffled feathers and hurt feelings to full-on shock that their views are being questioned. And it’s not just in response to people saying “you’re a jackwagon and I hate you!”  It has also come in response to people saying “that doesn’t make sense, and here’s why …”

Look, folks:  If you put your opinions out into the world, don’t act surprised or offended when people take issue. That’s how discourse works. Saying “I believe what you said is wrong, and here is why I think that” is healthy, despite what a lot of people think. It’s how most institutions get to the bottom of things. Peer review. Political discourse. That kind of thing. I know that sports writers have not traditionally had to deal with that, but in this day and age you cannot pretend that the opinions you put out in the world aren’t subject to criticism.  Especially when it comes to awards and Hall of Fame voting, because in those instances writers are not merely writers. They are news makers too.

By the way: that goes for the bloggy/Internet writers just as much as it goes for the old school people too. One thing I’ve seen a lot more of lately than I used to are blogger types who assert something, catch flak, and then act horrified that people aren’t agreeing with them. That’s pathetic, folks. Bloggy people should, more than anyone, be cool with things getting chippy.

But either way:  If you are going to dish it out, be prepared to take it. And we should — in the interest of furthering knowledge and enlightenment — be dishing it out, as long as we’re not doing so in way that is rude, personal and otherwise awful.

Latest Posts
  1. Marlins, White Sox “have discussed” a John Danks trade

    Jul 30, 2014, 11:19 PM EDT

    john danks getty Getty Images

    From FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi comes word that the Marlins and White Sox “have discussed a possible trade” involving left-handed starter John Danks.

  2. Giants expected to release second baseman Dan Uggla

    Jul 30, 2014, 10:02 PM EDT

    uggla giants getty Getty Images

    Dan Uggla’s stay with the Giants lasted nine days. MLB.com’s Chris Haft reports that San Francisco has released the veteran second baseman, who went 0-for-11 with a walk and six strikeouts in four games after being called up from Triple-A Fresno on July 25.

  3. Video: Manny Machado makes a ridiculous throw

    Jul 30, 2014, 9:15 PM EDT

    manny machado getty Getty Images

    Albert Pujols can barely move these days and for some reason went with a pop-up slide into first base, but this throw on Wednesday night from Manny Machado was still fantastic …

  4. Rangers’ retirement gifts for Derek Jeter: Yankees cowboy boots, signed George W. Bush photo

    Jul 30, 2014, 8:22 PM EDT

    jeter getty Getty Images

    Derek Jeter’s farewell tour continued Wednesday night at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas with another set of retirement gifts.

  5. Blue Jays considering Asdrubal Cabrera for second base

    Jul 30, 2014, 7:37 PM EDT

    asdrubal cabrera getty Getty Images

    CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that the Blue Jays are targeting Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera — who is known to be available — and would ask him to play second base.

  6. Cardinals GM John Mozeliak says he was never close to trading outfielder Oscar Taveras

    Jul 30, 2014, 6:49 PM EDT

    oscar taveras getty Getty Images

    Oscar Taveras has been mentioned as a possible centerpiece in trade talks this week for top-tier starting pitchers like David Price and Jon Lester, but if Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak is to be believed that was all speculation from the outside.

  7. Astros “looking to move” slugger Chris Carter

    Jul 30, 2014, 6:13 PM EDT

    chris carter getty Getty Images

    The 44-64 Astros could jump into this seller-friendly market before Thursday’s 4 p.m. ET trade deadline. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Houston is “looking to move” first baseman and designated hitter Chris Carter.

  8. Matt Harvey cleared to throw from a mound

    Jul 30, 2014, 5:06 PM EDT

    matt harvey getty Getty Images

    Now that it’s clear he can’t ramp up for 2014, the Mets have cleared Matt Harvey to throw.

  9. Nate Jones undergoes Tommy John surgery

    Jul 30, 2014, 4:46 PM EDT

    nate jones getty Getty Images

    White Sox reliever Nate Jones has been on the disabled list with a back injury since the first week of the season, but now he’s got an even bigger problem.

  10. The Mariners are out on Marlon Byrd

    Jul 30, 2014, 4:30 PM EDT

    Marlon Byrd Marlon Byrd

    It’s been a rumor for a good while, but now it’s going where rumors go when they die.

  11. There are reports that Jon Lester is going to the Orioles. And reports that that’s utter baloney

    Jul 30, 2014, 4:00 PM EDT

    Jon Lester

    The very essence of the trade deadline just played out on Twitter

  12. Eric Chavez announces retirement

    Jul 30, 2014, 3:51 PM EDT

    Eric Chavez

    Injuries derailed what was a very promising career for Chavez while with the A’s, but he bounced back and got healthy enough to thrive in part-time roles for the Yankees and Diamondbacks.

  13. Cubs acquire Felix Doubront from Red Sox

    Jul 30, 2014, 3:32 PM EDT

    Los Angeles Dodgers v Boston Red Sox Getty Images

    Felix Doubront made it clear that he wanted the Red Sox to either put him back into the starting rotation or trade him, and then he went out and had a terrible relief appearance that many took to mean he was trying to push a trade.

  14. UPDATE: OK, maybe the Marlins aren’t going to trade for John Lackey.

    Jul 30, 2014, 2:59 PM EDT

    lackey getty Getty Images

    A few minutes ago we thought this man could soon be a Fish. Now it seems unlikely. HAPPY TRADE DEADLINE!

  15. Josh Zeid needs season-ending foot surgery

    Jul 30, 2014, 2:44 PM EDT

    Josh Zeid Astros AP

    Zeid pitched well for the Astros as a 26-year-old rookie last season, but struggled mightily this season with a 6.97 ERA in 23 appearances.

  16. The Dodgers are out on Lester, Price and Hamels

    Jul 30, 2014, 2:32 PM EDT

    dodgers logo

    They’ve been rumored to be in on all the big names, but now it sounds as if they’re out.

  17. Cardinals acquire Justin Masterson from Indians

    Jul 30, 2014, 2:25 PM EDT

    justin masterson getty Getty Images

    Cleveland turned down Justin Masterson’s attempted contract extension offer back in spring training–balking at what seemed to be reasonable terms at the time–and now the Indians are trading the impending free agent to the Cardinals, according to Peter Gammons of MLB.com.

  18. HBT Daily: Trade Rumor Roundup: Kemp! Hamels! Price!

    Jul 30, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT

    HBT Daily Logo

    And no mention of Lester because I legit thought he’d get traded in between the time we taped this and the time it went live.

  19. Dylan Bundy is struggling in his comeback from Tommy John surgery

    Jul 30, 2014, 1:45 PM EDT

    Toronto Blue Jays v Baltimore Orioles Getty Images

    Orioles prospect Dylan Bundy would probably already be in the majors to stay if not for blowing out his elbow last season, but now the former No. 1 pitching prospect in baseball is struggling while rehabbing in the minors.

  20. The Dodgers are interested in Joaquin Benoit

    Jul 30, 2014, 1:30 PM EDT

    Joaquin Benoit

    But the Padres may be playing hard to get.

Featured video

All the trade deadline news to know
Top 10 MLB Player Searches