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T.J. Simers: Andre Ethier “selfish” and “counterproductive”

May 24, 2013, 9:55 PM EDT

Los Angeles Dodgers batter Andre Ethier reacts in the dugout after he struck out against the New York Mets during their MLB National League baseball game in New York Reuters

Well, that’s not nice. Here’s the full quote from T.J. Simers of the L.A. Times:

Mattingly’s critical comments of the team and Ethier came a day after being assured by Colletti that he had management’s support.

I’ve been writing it for years: Ethier is the most selfish athlete in town and counterproductive to a team’s achieving success.

I thought the Dodgers’ off-season should have begun by trading Ethier, but that’s something for Colletti to explain later.

Andre Ethier, entering tonight with a .264/.353/.405 line, was benched for Wednesday’s game against the Brewers despite not really being in a slump of any kind. It was the third time in the team’s previous six games that Ethier was not starting. Manager Don Mattingly implied Ethier wasn’t mentally tough. ESPN’s Mark Saxon tweets that Ethier hadn’t talked to manager Don Mattingly about the situation but is still stung by the criticism.

Ethier signed a five-year, $85 million extension with the Dodgers on June 12 last year, but has become the team’s whipping boy. The Dodgers opened the season with a $217 million payroll but sit in last place in the NL West at 19-26, thanks in part to a barrage of injuries. Placing the blame on Ethier, who is actually having a decent season thus far (.758 OPS), seems misguided.

The media, including Simers, don’t like Ethier because he’s emotional and abrasive at times, but that has nothing to do with his performance on the field. There are plenty of teams who would be happy to bring Ethier, so-called problems and all, aboard if the Dodgers are willing to take responsibility for a large portion of his remaining contract.

  1. sfm073 - May 24, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    Umm Bill you seem to be forgetting his own manager doesn’t like him so just blaming it on your media friends seems to be misguided.

    • pipkin42 - May 25, 2013 at 5:22 AM

      What? This makes no sense. Are they his media friends, or is he blaming Ethier’s lack of performance on them? Or both? I’m really confused how 17 people (as of this post) can like this comment. It’s a really dumb comment.

      Like, really?

      His terrible manager doesn’t like him?

      Really?

      17 people agree with this?

  2. duckthefodgers - May 24, 2013 at 10:49 PM

    Weird, Simmons usually has nothing but nice things to say.

    • prmallon5600 - May 25, 2013 at 2:39 PM

      Who is Simmons?

  3. dolphindubs - May 24, 2013 at 11:00 PM

    This season isn’t on Mattingly, it’s on the players. Firing coaches and managers for players NOT DOING THEIR JOB is a repetitive cycle that needs to be broken so these players in all sports start taking responsibility

    • biasedhomer - May 24, 2013 at 11:26 PM

      I agree, last year, everyone was praising Mattingly and his “midas touch” in which players like Hariston and Capuano had decent seasons.

      This year all the blame is on Mattingly, even though it is the players fault.

      • paperlions - May 25, 2013 at 10:01 AM

        Yeah, but that is how things work…if you get undeserved credit when things go well, they you will (and should) get undeserved blame when things go wrong.

        If people really think managers have a huge effect on player performance, feel free to list all of the managers who were able to take under performing players and turn them around beyond small sample size anomalies. I do think managers have an effect, but it is mostly just playing your best players as much as you can and effective use of the bullpen. Most players play pretty much the same regardless of their manager or team.

  4. bigharold - May 24, 2013 at 11:02 PM

    “selfish” and “counterproductive”

    Isn’t that the definition of T.J. Simers??

    • 4d3fect - May 25, 2013 at 12:26 AM

      TJ is all about digesting his own bile while desperately clutching at more page views.

  5. jiveturkey23 - May 24, 2013 at 11:12 PM

    He learned from the best. MILTON bradley

  6. A Whole New Blue Report - May 24, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    @dolphindubs: your definitely right but I think they already know that. However, you have to think about it baseball and all other American sports are businesses. Theses players may be buddy buddy with each other but in the end its all about the money. There only looking out for themselves and right now what I think Ethier is going through is a comfortable struggle. He is so financially secured that it doesn’t matter to him whether he is traded or playing he’s getting paid the bucks and when players get paid the bucks they don’t have to worry about responsibility because their set. I

    t would be very selfish on Ethier’s part if he is thinking that but that’s only a hypothetical because I really don’t know what he is thinking about it. However, I read people for a living and when I see someone who is not with it on the ball club, I can tell there is a problem and right now there is a problem with Ethier and manager Don Mattingly.

    I think it did have to do with that argument in Milwaukee and I think that’s why he benched him because he got over emotional. Then when Mattingly heard all this criticism from the press he just let them have it. He’s frustrated because he is the captain of a ship that is about to sink. Whatever happens with that ship he has to take the blame because its part of the job description of being a manager.

    Mattingly did tell the truth and I admire him for stepping up and saying something about the players and management. The Dodgers don’t need a bunch of All Stars, they do need a team. They don’t have leader, matter of fact I don’t know who the leader is. The leader so far is Mattingly but they need someone who has to step up and say something in the clubhouse no matter how much money they are making or how they are performing. Someone needs to be a leader.

    Trading Ethier would not solve anything. I think Ned Colletti is just delivering on his job because he doesn’t want to lose it. He got a bunch of overpaid players who I was excited to see come to L.A. but why Crawford, when you have Puig or Pederson? Why Beckett when you have pitchers in the minor leagues? That’s what I don’t get, the Dodgers need to find that balance.

    However, Ethier is also in a bind. His stats and stock are in limbo right now and I wouldn’t know who the Dodgers would trade for, for him with his high salary. Hypothetically, if they do trade him they’ll either end up asking for pitching again and hopefully a hitting prospect or players that they won’t bring up. Then they should bring up Puig or Pederson.

    Who knows though, its a tough mysterious that no one will be able to crack.

    • duckthefodgers - May 24, 2013 at 11:32 PM

      How long have you been wanting to say that. lol

      • jcmeyer10 - May 25, 2013 at 7:46 AM

        It’s been saved as a Word document for months now…

    • badintent - May 25, 2013 at 1:41 AM

      Not really, Just send him to NYC, the Yankee pixie dust will make him a clutch hitter like Wells and Overbay. Or Nix or ………………………………………………whoever

      • A Whole New Blue Report - May 25, 2013 at 2:58 AM

        And what would the Dodgers get in return for this trade to New York?

      • badintent - May 27, 2013 at 3:27 PM

        Desperate Housewifes of Jersey.Kim and her sisters need some help

      • A Whole New Blue Report - May 30, 2013 at 3:08 AM

        I was hoping Snookie and the gang

      • badintent - May 31, 2013 at 2:21 AM

        Ha ha ha ! I was hoping Snookie does Playboy

  7. moogro - May 24, 2013 at 11:55 PM

    Beckett is really lazy.

    • bowltr - May 25, 2013 at 6:08 AM

      Funny how the Dodgers acquire Beckett, Gonzo and Crawford and the Dodgers now completely suck, while the Red Sox trade those 3 and are good again.
      Things that make you go hmmmmmmmmmmmmm!

  8. datdangdrewdundunituhgin - May 25, 2013 at 2:19 AM

    “if the Dodgers are willing to take responsibility for a large portion of his remaining contract.”

    yeah. that pretty much says it all, no? i don’t blame LA for pistol-whipping him. 17m per year is a ton of dough for a guy hitting sub-.300

    • pipkin42 - May 25, 2013 at 5:24 AM

      But it was a totally great move a year ago? Everyone knew this was a bad contract when they offered it to him. WTF do they expect?

      • pipkin42 - May 25, 2013 at 5:25 AM

        ALSO BA is useless…why am I even feeding the trolls? It’s time for bed. I gotta give this up.

  9. randygnyc - May 25, 2013 at 3:07 AM

    Nothing in return for either. We’ll take him off your hands and you’ll pay 14 million a year for him to wear pinstripes. We may throw in a gift basket.

  10. rick2248 - May 25, 2013 at 11:08 AM

    This guy is over paid and that is the Dodgers fault.

  11. yahmule - May 25, 2013 at 1:34 PM

    Fairness is an arbitrary concept at best.

    Yasiel Time!

  12. yahmule - May 25, 2013 at 1:38 PM

    I would like to point out that “this season is not Mattingly’s fault” and “Mattingly is a poor manager” are far from mutually exclusive concepts.

  13. bluecrew53 - May 27, 2013 at 1:26 AM

    I happen to like Andre Ethier and don’t really care what that obnoxious blowhard TJ Simers thinks about him or anyone else, but he is a total hypocrite to make it seem like he’s never liked Ethier and didn’t think the Dodgers should sign him long term. He’s just trying to get on the let’s all bash Ethier train to draw attention to his own mean-spirited dribble. I give you the following article written by him in 2011 that pretty much contradicts his article from the other day:

    http://articles.latimes.com/2011/aug/27/sports/la-sp-simers-20110828

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