Marks, Part 2

John Lackey


On December 5, I published a column titled “Marks” which dared to suggest that baseball owners expolit naive fans by encouraging their mythological beliefs towards their team in order to extract money from them.

For my trouble, I was called a liar, a “pompous ***,” and various other insults on fan boards, although no one attempted to actually prove that what I wrote was wrong. They seemed to be more offended that I told the truth. Heavens.

Orange County Register columnist Jeff Miller picked up the theme in today’s edition. Citing online fans who’ve labelled John Lackey a “traitor” for having the audacity to accept a better offer, Miller called them “idiots” and dismissed them as a “vocal minority.”

It amazes that there are still fans clinging to the decayed notion of loyalty in sports, as if the games other people play are about anything other than business.

Folks, loyalty in pro sports died about the time kids stopped putting baseball cards in their bicycle spokes.

Near the end of the article, Miller adds:

Calling Lackey a traitor is juvenile and comical, which explains why most of this nonsense is unfolding on the Internet, a place where farting is considered a second language.

The Internet has given a public voice to people who never had one in the past. That’s a great thing, especially in an era where giant corporations try to control what we think and hear. But it also means that clueless self-centered people no longer have to stand on street corners to rant and rave.

We didn’t pay attention to those people when they stood on street corners. It should be the same on the Internet.

According to media reports, the Angels are about to sign Yankees DH Hideki Matsui to a one-year deal for $6.5 million.

You could frame this week’s transactions as a three-way trade.

What if I said that the Angels traded John Lackey to the Boston Red Sox, got Hideki Matsui from the Yankees in return, and the Red Sox threw in $76 million to the Angels spread over the next five years?

Because that’s basically what just happened.

Lackey reportedly will sign a five-year contract with Boston worth $82.5 million.

That’s $82.5 million the Angels won’t be paying him.

That’s $82.5 million the Angels can spend elsewhere.

So tell me why this is a bad deal.


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